The Asian Age

Maya gets wary of BJP ef­fect

- AMITA VERMA

BSP pres­i­dent Mayawati is wary of the BJP, and not with­out rea­son ei­ther. Her trusted dalit vot­ers got con­verted to Hin­dus and voted en masse for the BJP in the re­cent Lok Sabha elec­tions that made the BSP face to­tal rout.

Now, with by­elec­tions in UP sched­uled for this month, the BSP pres­i­dent has warned her vot­ers against vot­ing for the BJP in the ab­sence of the BSP can­di­dates.

The BSP has al­ready an­nounced it is not con- test­ing the UP by­elec­tions. “We are not con­test­ing the by­elec­tions but you must not give your votes to the BJP be­cause they in­cite you to fight against Mus­lims and the up­per castes savour the spoils of the bat­tle. Do not strengthen the BJP by giv­ing your vote to them. You can vote for In­de­pen­dents of your choice in­stead,” she told party work­ers at the end of the two- day party meet. “It is the Hindu sys­tem that has treated you as un­touch­ables all th­ese years and it the BJP that has al­lowed the sys­tem to pros­per,” she said.

In her ad­dress, Ms Mayawati used po­lit­i­cal, so­cial and emo­tional ar­gu­ments to keep her vot­ers away from the BJP and in­structed them to “waste” their votes in­stead of giv­ing them to BJP. Her con­cern about the BJP mak­ing in­roads into her dalit support base is un­der­stand­able be­cause dal­its had turned “Hindu with a vengeance” in the Lok Sabha elec­tions and this con­trib­uted to the BJP’s sweep­ing vic­tory and the fail­ure of the BSP to win even a sin­gle seat.

“The BSP pres­i­dent in de­ter­mined to make her vot­ers re­turn to the casteist fold and not get car­ried away by the com­mu­nal pro­pa­ganda. In her speech, she has in­formed them of the dan­gers of turn­ing com­mu­nal and has ex­plained how the BJP has taken ad­van­tage of dal­its for po­lit­i­cal gain but done noth­ing for the de­prived sec­tions,” said a se­nior party func­tionary.

Till re­cently, it was be­lieved that the BSP votes, in the ab­sence of their party can­di­date, would go to the BJP since the dalit- OBC hos­til­i­ties do not al­low BSP vot­ers to vote for the SP.

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