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Maya mantra for adjustments

AT A time when speculations are rife about Mayawati?s political plans, her book ?Mere Sangharshmay Jeevan evam Bahujan Movement ka Safarnaama? throws some light on her flexible approach. However, she lays down conditions for ?political adjustments?. On page 546 of part one of her book, which she released on her 50th birthday in Delhi, Mayawati writes, ?We can think again on adjustments with the BJP only if it renounces its manuvadi traits and throws out small-time leaders who create rift in the alliance?.

india Updated: Jan 24, 2006 01:21 IST

AT A time when speculations are rife about Mayawati’s political plans, her book ‘Mere Sangharshmay Jeevan evam Bahujan Movement ka Safarnaama’ throws some light on her flexible approach. However, she lays down conditions for ‘political adjustments’.

On page 546 of part one of her book, which she released on her 50th birthday in Delhi, Mayawati writes, “We can think again on adjustments with the BJP only if it renounces its manuvadi traits and throws out small-time leaders who create rift in the alliance”. She does not specify names but obviously the reference is to some BJP leaders from Uttar Pradesh.

While she wants the Congress to realise and swear that it will not repeat the mistakes committed by their forefathers and their sons of meting out step- motherly treatment to the Bahujan Samaj, the firebrand leader demands a public apology from SP Chief Mulayam Singh Yadav for the infamous State Guest House incident. She questions, “Hame Bharatiya Janata Party ke saath kyon Jaana parta aur aaj bhi Mulayam ko mare mare kyon ghoomna parta” (Why at all we had to join hands with the BJP or why even today Mulayam has to run from pillar to post), if he had run the coalition government properly in 1993. She blames Mulayam’s advisers for his plight. Thereafter, she goes on to clarify that she is not against any caste or religion but is fighting for certain issues.

Interestingly, Mayawati reveals the reason behind two pre-electoral alliances in 22 years of the BSP’s existence. In both the alliances the BSP had to suffer huge political losses. She says first alliance was sewed with Mulayam Singh Yadav with two-fold purposes: first to unite Bahujan Samaj under the leadership of someone from the Bahujan Samaj, and second to checkmate the BJP’s growth on temple issue. The experiment failed because of Mulayam’s selfish politics. The second alliance was done with the Congress after the country’s prime minister and Congress president went knocking at Kanshi Ram’s doors. This alliance between ‘Ambedkar and Gandhi’ was done primarily to avenge the 1971 humiliation when the Congress gave just one seat to the RPI in Maharashtra elections.

The 2000-page book draws a picture of Maya’s political journey that started with her first meeting with Kanshi Ram sometime in 1977, traces her three stints in power and ends with her political message that the interest of the upper caste was also safe with the BSP. While promising the Bahujan Samaj of providing a Dalit prime minister to the country in over a decade’s time, Mayawati credits the BSP with the ongoing silent revolution in the country and quotes Nobel Prize winner Amartya Sen: “Silence is the powerful enemy of social justice.” For herself, she writes, “Just as the BSP today is a symbol of Bahujan Samaj’s dignity, Mayawati, in the opinion of intellectuals, has acquired such a standing in Indian politics wherein people may criticise her, even condemn her, but nobody can ignore her.”

Mayawati, besides elaborating the steps taken by her party and government in the interest of Bahujan Samaj, makes an interesting revelation that her father too was opposed to her decision to join Kanshi Ram. “The day I told him that I did not want to become a bureaucrat, my father had said, “Kanshi Ram ke chakkar mein aap ek corporator bhi nahin ban sakti.” Later, he even threatened her that he would throw her out of the house if she did not dissociate from Kanshi Ram and continued with her preparations for IAS. And she left her house with seven years of her savings from her salary in pocket and elder brother beside her to thrice become the chief minister of the state.

Apology! For what?

CHIEF MINISTER Mulayam Singh Yadav today said he was not going to publicly apologise for something he had not done or was not involved in.

Instead, he said he had been magnanimous enough to ignore the BSP’s baseless tirade against him. “Had I been vindictive Mayawati and some of her ministers would have been in serious trouble.” The chief minister said that while the Lokayukta’s report was pending with the government against some of her ministers, she herself had committed serious blunders. Had I taken action in these cases, she would have been in trouble within 15 days of his assuming office.

Reacting to Mayawati’s demand for public apology for the State Guest House incident, the chief minister said the two courts of the country, the lower court and the High Court, had already exonerated him of the charges and now the matter was in the apex court. Mulayam said that he was bold and benevolent enough to have tendered his apologies if he had any role whatsoever in the State Guest House incident.

Recalling what had happened that day Mr Yadav said, “I was attending my party’s national executive meeting at a local hotel when my secretary told me to talk to Mr Kanshi Ram. I telephoned Kanshi Ram and was told that he was in the hospital. Thereafter, I drove straight from the hotel to my Vikramaditya Marg
residence.” Thereafter he was told that Mayawati had withdrawn support ….

“What all happened thereafter is all recorded. So where is the need for me to apologise? Instead I had asked the Governor to provide security at the State Guest House besides seeking three weeks time to prove my majority. The then Governor Moti Lal Vora declined knowing that I would have proved my majority on the floor of the House.”

He also scoffed at her observation that “mara mara ghoom raha hai”. “I have never knocked at any door for support. We had 144 MLAs after 2000 Assembly Elections. I was told to contact Sonia Gandhi for support. But I did not go anywhere. It was Ajit Singh who helped us form the government. Those who took part in the meeting included Amar Singh, Raghuraj Pratap Singh, Kalyan Singh, Pramod Tiwari and Jagdambika Pal.”

He also ruled out any possibility of an alliance with the BSP in future. “They do politics of power and not of ideology, principles.” Speculations had been rife in political circles about the BSP and the SP sinking differences after her categorical assertion that she had nothing against Mulayam as an individual, though she came down heavily on him in her other chapters.

First Published: Jan 24, 2006 01:21 IST