Upper castes play crucial role in BSP victory
Brahmins and upper caste candidates played a crucial role for BSP, a party founded by Dalit leaders, to get an absolute majority with nearly 40 per cent of them emerging victorious in the just concluded assembly elections.
The BSP, which was formed on the platform of opposition to Brahmins, trading commuity and Thakurs, gave candidates from these groups tickets for 139 constituencies. In all, 34 Brahmins and 19 Thakurs won.
The party which had raised slogans like "Tilak, Taraju and Talwar, inko maaro jute chaar (Brahmin, Bania and Thakurs, beat them with shoes) gradually softened its stance towards these groups in a novel strategy of social engineering, which made BSP a rainbow grouping.
BSP's Brahmin candidates Rajesh Tripathi and Bhagwan Sharma outwitted stalwarts like Harishankar Tiwari in Chillupar (Gorakhpur) and BJP leader Kalyan Singh's son Rajveer Singh in Debai (Bulandshahr) constituencies.
Similarly cabinet ministers in Mulayam Singh Yadav government -- Balram Singh Yadav (Atraulia) and environment minister Ujjwal Raman Singh (Karchana), Ashok Bajpai (Pihani), Shakir Ali (Gauribazar), Rajaram Pandey (Gadhwara) and state ministers Narad Rai (Ballia), Kailash Yadav (Saidpur), Virendra Singh (Chiraigaon) and Shardananad Anchal (Sear) were drubbed by BSP's Brahmin nominees.
BSP's Brahmin candidates in Chanda, Machlishahr, Bilgram, Mahona, Aonla, Gauriganj, Pratapgarh, Garwara, Beerapur, Ramnagar, Bhinga, Handia, Rudrapur, Nathupur, Atraulia, Saidpur, Sikandarpur, Barsathi, Hathras, Hahanabad, Bah and Chaubepur wrested the seats from other parties.
Owing to the Brahmin factor, BSP succeeded in winning seats almost in all the regions -- even where there were candidates of other castes with Satish Chandra Mishra, party's Brahmin face extensively campaigning for the party.
Mishra had been holding a number of Brahmin sammelans all over the state for the past two years to moblise the community in favour of the party and had succeeded in his endeavour, party leaders said.