Lucknow: Ahead of Uttar Pradesh assembly elections, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) leader Mayawati on Saturday criticized Samajwadi Party (SP) and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) for their anti-Dalit policies .
The former Chief Minister called on members of the Muslim and Dalit communities not to forget the Muzaffaranagar riots and Shabbirpur violence under the SP and BJP regimes in Uttar Pradesh respectively.
Polling for the Uttar Pradesh Legislative Assembly, which has 403 members, will take place in seven phases starting February 10 and votes will be counted on March 10.
“The Samajwadi party government shut down the Jatav-Muslim brotherhood in western Uttar Pradesh, plotting the Muzaffarnagar riots in which members of both communities lost their lives and property,” Mayawati said. at a public meeting in harapur.
In the same way, she added, the BJP government “terminated the Dalit-Kshatriya brotherhood by inciting violence against the Dalits of Shabbirpur village in Saharanpur district.”
In Muzaffarnagar district, clashes between Hindu and Muslim communities took place in August–September 2013 when the SP was in power in the state. More than 60 people were killed and 40,000 displaced in the riots. According to reports, 510 cases were registered by the police in connection with the riots and 1,480 people were arrested.
On April 14, 2017, tensions erupted between the Dalit and Rajput communities of Shabbirpur village in Saharanpur district over the installation of the statue of Bhimrao Ambedkar by the Dalit community to mark his birthday. The two members of the community clashed on May 5 during the Rajputs’ birthday celebration of Maharana Pratap, resulting in the death of an upper-caste youth. Later, members of the Rajput community allegedly attacked the Dalits, during which 12 Dalits were injured and 40 houses were burnt down. The incident happened during the current BJP rule in the state. The police registered a case and arrested two dozen people.
The BSP leader also urged voters to support BSP in the upcoming elections and reject the rival BJP, SP and Congress, which she called “anti-Dalit”, “anti-Muslim” and “anti-OBC”. During the tenure of the four-time BSP-led government in the state, members of all communities and castes have progressed according to the formula “sarvajan hitay sarvajan sukhay (for the welfare of all, for the happiness of all) “, she said.
Attacking the SP, Mayawati claimed that the party’s tenure in the state under its patriarch Mulayam Singh Yadav and former chief minister Akhilesh Yadav had “insulted” intellectuals and Dalit saints by changing the names of various institutions named after Dalit icons.
She also alleged that the SP pushed Muslims aside despite their support. “SP leader thinks Muslims are in his pocket and pushed them aside after forming government in 2012.”
The former four-term chief minister pledged to restore plans, projects and districts that were named after Dalit icons, adding that strict measures will be taken to improve the law and order of the Uttar Pradesh if the BSP is elected to power.
“A commission will be set up to implement the real demands of the civil servants. Farmers will get fair prices for their produce and the exploitation of traders will be controlled. Development will be the main program of the BSP government,” Mayawati said.
Attacking the BJP-led Union government, she said various “controversial rules and laws” passed by the Center will not be enforced in Uttar Pradesh if her party forms the state government.
“The cases filed by the BJP government against individuals for organizing dharnas and protests will be withdrawn after proper investigation. There will be no discrimination based on caste or religion,” she said, adding that her party will send all “morons, mafia and criminals to jail.”
The BJP has engaged in hate politics in the name of religion and suppressed Muslims, Dalits and Hindu scholars, she claimed. Due to the bad policies of the BJP government, the prices of essential items have risen and people have suffered during the Covid-19 pandemic, she added.
Mayawati urged voters not to be fooled by the election manifesto published by rival parties. “People should not be misled by opinion polls and polls conducted by the media. As in 2007, BSP will once again form the government alone,” she said.
Meanwhile, Samajwadi party spokesman Rajendra Chaudhary said the PS government had worked for the welfare and upliftment of all communities, including Muslims. “The Muslim community has dumped the BSP. The BSP’s attempt to mislead the Muslim community will not succeed because they have decided to support the SP,” Chaudhary added.
Uttar Pradesh BJP Chairman Sameer Singh said that under the government of Yogi Adityanath, all communities have benefited from the programs and projects initiated by the government. “The BSP indulges in the politics of caste and religion, the people will reject it in the assembly elections.”