ANDHRA PRADESH

Congress used SCs as vote bank: Dattatreya

Special Correspondent

HYDERABAD: BJP State president Bandaru Dattatreya has said that the downfall of Congress in the northern States was a result of the erosion in the vote bank of the latter among the Scheduled Castes.

Addressing a meeting organised by the Greater Hyderabad unit of BJP to mark the 52nd death anniversary of B.R. Ambedkar here on Saturday, Mr. Dattatreya said the Congress traditionally treated Scheduled Castes as a vote bank without working for their uplift. In fact, the Congress worked to the detriment of the community when it ensured the defeat of Ambedkar in two elections.

The SCs of northern States saw through the game of Congress and defeated the party. The trend also caught up with the community in Tamil Nadu and Karnataka. Eleven of the thirteen SC MLAs who won the last elections in Karnataka were from BJP, he added.

Mr. Dattatreya accused the Congress of extending reservations on the basis of religion though Ambedkar opposed such a proposal in the Constituent Assembly.

Former MLA K. Laxman said the Constitution mandated the Government to allocate budget for the welfare of SCs and STs as per their population. But, the UPA Government fell far short of the target in the last four-and-a-half years.

Addressing a press conference later, BJP MLA G. Kishan Reddy said the party had decided to mobilise people against the dangers of terrorism. People were anguished at recent terrorist attacks in the country. He criticised Chief Minister Y.S. Rajasekhara Reddy for not reacting to remarks in support of terrorism by Majlis Ittehadul Muslimeen leader in Assembly Akbaruddin Owaisi.