In a bid to expand her voter base across the national political scene, Bahujan Samajwadi Party (BSP) supremo Mayawati is now trying to shed her image of an anti-upper class leader.
Addressing a rally at Indira Park in Sultanpur Majra in north-west Delhi, Mayawati said her party believed in the ideology of taking all communities together and working for the benefit of people across society.
“Our policies and ideology are not against any particular caste or religion. If we were anti-upper caste, we would not have given tickets to candidates from upper castes to contest elections,” she said.
She was seconded by right-hand man and party General Secretary Satish Chandra Sharma, who gave his own example to show that people from the upper caste are considered equal in the BSP.
Now looking to make her mark in the Delhi Assembly elections, Mayawati said successive governments in the center and the state had done little to improve the economic condition of people in Delhi. “To take care of issues like regularisation of unauthorised colonies, lack of medical facilities, scarcity of water and electricity, and full statehood for Delhi, you must vote the BSP to power,” Mayawati told the 15,000- strong gathering.
Seeking votes for BSP candidates contesting the Assembly elections, Mayawati said local problems of Delhiites would only be solved if the BSP were voted to power. The BSP would also address the problems Delhi’s migrant population faces, which have always been given a cold shoulder by successive BJP and Congress governments, she said.
“We gave reservation to low-income Muslims when we came to power in UP in 1995. We will do the same if we are voted to power in Delhi and the centre,” the BSP leader said.
Terming Delhi’s law and order condition no better than that in UP during the Samajwadi Party regime, she said the right place for criminals is behind bars.
“This is what we did in UP and this is what is needed to be done in Delhi too — sending criminals to jail,” she said.