Odisha district starts striking off Bangladeshis from voters’ list
Lucknow: BSP chief Mayawati said here on Sunday that she would enter into a pre-poll alliance with SP only if her party got a respectable number of seats. Otherwise, her party was fully capable of going it alone. She also snubbed Bhim Army founder Chandrashekhar Azad, denying any association with him, just two days after he had referred to Mayawati as his ‘bua’ (aunt) while saying that the two have the “same blood” as both are Dalits.
Azad responded to Mayawati’s attack saying her concerns were not valid as his outfit was neither planning to contest elections in 2019 nor looking for any political alliance. “If she said that she is not anyone’s ‘bua’ (aunt) and she only wants to help the Dalit society, then am I not part of the same samaj? When I call her ‘buaji’ and say that she and I are the same blood, I mean it. All Dalits are my family. My battle is for their redemption. I want to tell ‘buaji’ that my battle is not to upstage any political outfit, including BSP, or fight Lok Sabha polls in 2019,” he told TOI.
Talking to reporters at her new 9 Mall Avenue house here, Mayawati said: “I will be compelled to go for it alone if BSP does not get a respectable number of seats in the anti-BJP alliance that is shaping up before the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.” “Our party is not against the alliance, but our stand is very clear that we will ally with a political party only if we get a respectable share of seats. Otherwise, our party feels it is better to contest the elections alone,” she said.
In the same breath she reiterated that the effort of the opposition parties will be to stop BJP from coming to power at any cost in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls as well as assembly elec- Kendrapara (Odisha): With the EC carrying out revision of voters’ list, the district administration in Odisha’s Kendrapara has started disenfranchising suspected Bangladeshis whose names figured in the list of electorates, officials said on Sunday. The coastal district has 1,649 Bangladeshi settlers. Mahakalpada tehsil alone houses 1,551. of them.So far, 137 Bangladeshis have been detected in Mahakalpada tehsil’s list. After thorough verification of their nativity antecedents, they have been removed from the list, said Kendrapara district collector Dasarathi Satpathy. The voters list revision process will continue till September 27. Officials engaged in the exercise have been asked to ensure that none of these foreign nationals find place in the final list, Satpathy said. tions in Rajasthan, MP and Chhattisgarh later this year. Hitting out at Azad, Mayawati said there were some who were unnecessarily trying to establish a “bhai-bahen” or “buabhatija” relationship with her for their “political benefits”.
“The person who was released recently by BJP has been trying to cover his shortcomings by trying to unnecessary establish a relationship with me by calling me ‘bua’. I would like to tell such people that I can never have a whole-hearted or a respectful relationship with them,” Mayawati said, referring to Azad.
Criticising him for forming Bhim Army, she said if people were her genuine sympathisers and of the Dalit cause, there was no need for them to form separate organisations and they should have joined BSP.
Azad asserted that despite Mayawati’s remarks, his respect for her would not diminish. The growing feeling in the Bhim Army is that Mayawati was playing hardball with Congress and SP and may have opened a line with BJP after the release of Azad.
The timing of Azad’s release is being seen by political commentators in UP as a wellorchestrated strategy by BJP to test strength of alliances in UP at a time when the result of Phulpur, Gorakhpur, Noorpur and Kairana bypolls have given aboost to SP, BSP and RLD. “We will support all parties looking to drive BJP out of UP and help us fight against atrocities against Dalits,” said Azad.