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Mayawati to bank on Dalit-Brahmin unity

Atiq Khan

To replicate the social engineering formula in the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections



BSP holds Brahmin convention in Lucknow

Another rally planned in Amethi on February 9



LUCKNOW: The Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister and BSP president, Mayawati, on Sunday set in motion her party’s strategy to replicate the success of the social engineering formula in the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections in the State. She underlined the need for Dalit-Brahmin unity, whose most eloquent testimony has been the party’s success in the 2007 Assembly elections.

Considering that the Dalits and Brahmins once constituted the main support base of the Congress and the BJP in Uttar Pradesh, Ms. Mayawati attacked the two parties, accusing them of misleading the Dalits and Brahmins.

At a Brahmin convention of the BSP here, the Chief Minister said the unity of the party’s core cadre of the Dalits and the Brahmins was crucial for the success in the forthcoming elections. Ms. Mayawati said once the BSP came to power at the Centre there would be no shortage of funds for the development of Uttar Pradesh as the purse strings were with the Centre.

A BSP Government at the Centre would ensure eradication of poverty, employment and development in Uttar Pradesh. Stating that she inherited an empty treasury when she assumed power in May 2007, the BSP leader slammed the UPA Government for refusing Central help for the development schemes. She assailed the Centre’s silence on the Rs.80,000 crore package demanded by her and said shortage of funds has been a big impediment.

The BSP chief was of the view that a little push needed to be given to the exceptional unity exhibited by the Dalits and the Brahmins during the Lok Sabha polls in a bid to capture power at the Centre. Ms. Mayawati added that the Dalits, Brahmins along with the Backward Classes were central to the BSP’s scheme of forming the next Government at the Centre.

She stated that the social engineering formula was adopted by her in Uttar Pradesh following her refusal to submit the BJP’s pressure politics when she was the Chief Minister in 2002-2003. Ms. Mayawati said the BJP, which was her alliance partner then, wanted her to leave 60 of the 80 Lok Sabha seats in U.P. for the saffron party in the 2004 General Elections. She preferred to quit as the Chief Minister rather than succumb to the BJP’s pressure politics. It was then that she decided to expand the BSP’s base by enlisting the support of the ‘sarv samaj’. Addressing the convention, the BSP’s national general secretary, Satish Chandra Mishra, announced that a Brahmin rally would be held in Amethi on February 9 in which Brahmin workers from Rae Bareli, Sultanpur and Amethi would participate. The meeting will be addressed by the Chief Minister. He said around three lakh Brahmins are expected to attend the rally. Amethi constituency is represented by Congress general secretary, Rahul Gandhi.

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