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Mayawati kicks off poll campaign

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Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister and BSP president Mayawati at an election rally in Thiruvananthapuram on Saturday. She is flanked by A. Neelalohitadasan Nadar (right), BSP candidate for Thiruvananthapuram Lok Sabha seat, and party general secretary Satish Chandra Mishra.
Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister and BSP president Mayawati at an election rally in Thiruvananthapuram on Saturday. She is flanked by A. Neelalohitadasan Nadar (right), BSP candidate for Thiruvananthapuram Lok Sabha seat, and party general secretary Satish Chandra Mishra.

Special Correspondent

Promises reservation benefits to the financially poor among the forward castes

THIRUVANANTHAPURAM: While ensuring the reservation for the Scheduled Castes, Tribes and other Backward Communities, the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) will extend reservation benefits to the financially poor among the forward castes too, party national president and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati has said.

Inaugurating the BSP’s national campaign for the 15th Lok Sabha elections here on Saturday evening, Ms. Mayawati said that if voted to power at the Centre, the BSP would emulate the reservation and economic policies being pursued in Uttar Pradesh.

Ending social inequalities was the solution to problems like naxalism, terrorism and other divisive tendencies. The reservation policy would be implemented in elected bodies. Due importance would be given to Dalit Christians and other religious minorities too.

Unlike the Congress, BJP and other parties which seek the financial support of the rich and the capitalists, the BSP was going to the polls with the funds garnered by the party workers and hence was not committed to anyone. The rich will not have any say in the government. It will have independent foreign, economic and agriculture policies.

The BSP which came to power in Uttar Pradesh four times, had taken up these issues with the Centre, but to no avail. The successive Central governments had been indifferent to the demands of the BSP. “Canards are being spread against it. The campaign that the party is against the forward castes is baseless. It has an inclusive approach and stands for effacing all inequalities.”

She also detailed the steps being taken by the UP government for the weaker sections and religious minorities. While B.R. Ambedkar strived hard and secured reservation for the backward communities, the benefits were snatched away through various legislations by parties like the Congress and the BJP.

The developments in Kerala too were a matter of concern. Successive governments had not taken any interest in addressing the problems of the poor, the farmers, marginal traders and other weaker sections. The BSP had no alliance with any party and had decided to go it alone in the elections. If elected, the thrust would be on protecting the interests of all sections, she said.

National general secretary Suresh Mane welcomed the gathering. Mr. Mane said there was only a government and no governance in the State. Satish Chandra Mishra, MP, and BSP candidate in Thiruvananthapuram Lok Sabha constituency A. Neelalohitadasan Nadar were among those who spoke.


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