Dalit scholar Kanwal Bharti, who was recently arrested over a Facebook post which was critical of the Samajwadi Party, has joined the Congress Party.
"The situation in Rampur was such that I couldn't fight alone. Under such conditions, I had to take this step. Only the Congress can help me get bail and fight this," he told The Hindu.
Mr. Bharti, however, contended he had no desire of contesting in elections.
"I intend to use this platform to raise voice for Dalits. It was time, I felt, to bring Dalit sahitya (literature) into the political realm," he said.
As to why he picked the Congress, Mr. Bharti said the party "stood by him" during the recent ordeal.
"The Dalit leadership within the SP is dumb and deaf. The BSP is ruled by one leader. There is no democracy in it. The BJP is ‘Hinduvta’ centric, something which I cannot support," he said.
Mr. Bharti is known for coming in support of the Muslims of Rampur. He, however, insisted that his entry should not be viewed politically or in the context of next year's general elections.
Rampur is the home turf of senior SP leader and State Urban Development minister Azam Khan.