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Mayawati threatens to dump UPA

The BSP will consider withdrawal of support to the Congress-led coalition after March 10, UP Chief Minister and party president Mayawati said on Sunday.
By HT Correspondent | PTI, Bhopal
UPDATED ON FEB 10, 2008 08:03 PM IST

The BSP will consider withdrawal of support to the Congress-led coalition after March 10, UP Chief Minister and party president Mayawati said on Sunday.

"At present, Budget session of Uttar Pradesh Assembly is on. We will consider withdrawal of support to the UPA after the session is over on March 10," she said addressing 'Sarva Jan Samaj Bhaichara Banao Maharally' organised by the BSP at the Lal Parade Ground in Bhopal.

"Jealous of BSP's growth, opposition parties are raking up 'fake' cases against me to mount political pressure," she alleged, adding "first BJP raised the issue of Taj Corridor... now the Congress-led Government is trying to reopen it."

Describing it as a "personal attack", the BSP leader, addressing her maiden rally in Bhopal after becoming chief minister in May last year, alleged the BJP and Congress misused government machinery and "caused pain to me, my 82-year-old parents and relatives".

"They don't know the pain. After the tables turn (if BSP comes to power at the Centre), I will make sure they are aware of the pain caused to me, my parents and relatives," she thundered at the well-attended rally.

"I ask the opposition parties to refrain from personal attacks as it is not a good tradition for healthy politics."
Referring to the Centre's denial of SPG cover to strengthen her security in the wake of perceived threats to her life, she said it was another move by Congress to mount pressure on her.

Accusing the successive Congress and BJP governments at the Centre for their failure to uplift all sections of society, Mayawati said if her party comes to power economic policies would be framed in such a manner that the poor and deprived sections get immediate priority.

Referring to steps taken by her nine-month-old government in the most populous state, the BSP chief said 10 per cent reservation each to SC/ST, OBC and poor among the upper caste, had been provided even in the private sector.

It is mandatory for industrialists taking over public units to implement reservation in Uttar Pradesh, she said.
Claiming to have asked the Centre to offer reservation to Dalits converting to other religions, she said reservation should be provided to them other than that quota for the OBCs and SC/STs.

Mayawati said if her party comes to power at the Centre, the National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme, the flagship plan of the UPA Government providing 100-day job to the poor, will be scrapped and replaced by a new legislation ensuring 365-day employment.

Without naming Congress General Secretary Rahul Gandhi and Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, she cautioned people not to be "misled" by their "gimmicks" like eating and sleeping at houses of the poor.

"Rather than getting influenced by such political leaders, people should fully back BSP for all-round development of society." The rally was attended by people from neighbouring states.

Angry over denial of SPG cover, Mayawati said Congress will be fully responsible if she is assassinated. "I have been denied security cover despite intelligence reports (about threats to her life). If I am killed, you (party workers) should never forgive Congress and take revenge with all your strength."

"In case of my assassination, people of my party will continue the campaign for BSP and reach a level in five years, which could only be achieved in 10 years."

Referring to BSP's plan in the BJP-ruled state, Mayawati said a victory in Madhya Pradesh Assembly polls would be possible only if her party ropes in support of upper caste members.

"BSP is not an anti-upper caste party. Support of upper caste members is necessary for a win in Madhya Pradesh."
Amidst slogans like 'Uttar Pradesh mein hai sarkar, Madhya Pradesh mein agali bar' (Have a government in Uttar Pradesh, next time in Madhya Pradesh), 'Desh ka PM kaisa ho, Mayawati Bahen jaisa ho' (how should be the country's PM be, like Mayawati), the BSP chief addressed the rally flanked by senior party colleagues, virtually launching her party's poll campaign in the state.

The rally was part of BSP's social engineering meets being organised in several states to mobilise the support of upper castes besids Dalits.

Mayawati gave the example of the party's top leader and aide Satish Chandra Mishra to prove the point that BSP also catered to the needs of upper castes.

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