The Supreme Court's refusal to reopen the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) probe into the disproportionate assets (DA) case has come as a big relief for Mayawati as well as BSP supporters. “The BSP could not have asked for more before the crucial Lok Sabha Sabha election round the corner”, said the national general secretary of BSP Swami Prasad Maurya.
Now the BSP plans to go on the offensive against arch rival Samawadi Party on the corruption issue.
Maurya said, “The Supreme Court order clearly shows that the case against behanji (as Mayawati is addressed by BSP leaders and workers) was politically motivated.” He said BSP had planned an offensive against rival parties. “We will expose corruption in the Samajwadi Party government.”
The DA case had hung like a Damocles sword over Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati for nearly 10 years. The BSP had remained on the back foot since 2003 as rival political parties used the DA case as a potent weapon to demoralize its cadre and to create panic in the BSP camp.
Since losing power in Uttar Pradesh to the Samajwadi Party in March 2012, the erstwhile BSP government has come under severe onslaught from rivals over alleged corruption. More than a dozen BSP ministers including party heavyweight Naseemuddin Siddique came under the scanner of the Lokayukta, the State Economic Offences wing and other probe agencies for alleged financial impropriety.
To keep the party cadre upbeat, Mayawati on July 30 had said that DA case was a conspiracy hatched by the opposition to check the oppressed class movement.
It has been a long battle for BSP to wriggle out of the case. In 2005-06, when the CBI tightened its noose around her and it seemed that her arrest was imminent, Mayawati called a meeting of the senior party leaders in Lucknow. She not only announced her successor but also told the party men continue the fight even if she was lodged in jail.
Mayawati has repeatedly used the public platform to defend herself and accused the Bharatiya Janata Party of implicating her in the “false” case. In 2005-6, the BSP leaders worked hard to keep their flock together as the Opposition mounted pressure.
Though the BSP came to power in the 2007 assembly elections there was no relief for Mayawati. The Opposition continued to rake up the DA case for five years until 2012, when the BSP was voted out of power.
Following the Thursday order, hundreds of jubilant BSP workers marched from the party state unit office to the Ambedkar statue located at the busy Hazaratganj crossing. They distributed sweets and raised slogans in support of the party chief. The district unit president Rakesh Gautam said, “the party would definitely cash in on the relief given by the apex court to Behenji in the coming Lok Sabha election”.
Political observer Badra Narayan Tiwari said that an upbeat Mayawati would now certainly take the high moral ground over the issue.