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PM Modi’s remarks on Dalits motivated by vote bank politics: Mayawati

india Updated: Aug 08, 2016 14:06 IST
Prime Minister Narendra Modi

BSP chief Mayawati interacts with journalists at Parliament House during the monsoon session.(Vipin Kumar/HT PHOTO)

Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati said on Monday that Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s statements on Dalit atrocity was “notorious (shsraratpurn) and motivated by vote bank policy”.

“They were in slumber like ‘Kumbhakarna’, but now their eyes have opened, because there are assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh and some other states and they knew it well that Dalits were not going to vote for them. Thus, the Prime Minister’s statement was aimed at winning Dalit votes,” Mayawati told reporters outside Parliament.

“We have been demanding a statement from Prime Minister Modi in Parliament against atrocities on Dalits across the country. But he could not muster his confidence to make a statement in the House, and thus, he made statements outside,” said the BSP chief taking strong exception to the Prime Minister’s statements at the town hall meeting in Delhi and BJP workers’ meeting in Hyderabad.

“Two years on, since this government came to power at the Centre; and for the past two years, first, people of the Muslim community were targeted in the name of cow protection, and now Dalits are being targeted on one pretext or another, as the case of Rohith Vemula is before you. But the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP)-led central government, especially Prime Minister Modi, remained silent for the past two years,” she said criticising silence maintained by the Prime Minister after lynching of 52-year-old Mohammad Akhlaq Saifi in Uttar Pradesh’s Dadari and suicide committed by research scholar Rohith Vemula on the Hyderabad University premises.

Mayawati said, “Dalits, who are subjected to atrocities across the country, don’t need sympathies of the BJP, the Centre and the Prime Minister; they want strict action against people involved in their atrocities.”

When asked about former BSP MLA Swami Prasad Maurya joining the BJP, she said she doesn’t want to waste her time and energy by commenting on such people.

In an unusual expression of solidarity with the Dalit community that faced the wrath of so-called ‘cow protectors’ in Gujarat recently, Prime Minister Modi on Sunday went hammer and thongs at them, saying if they want to shoot, they should shoot him, but not his Dalit brothers.