VP's morcha falters as IJP soft pedals SP

The Indian Justice Party says it had no fight with ruling Samajwadi Party as IJP?s main rival was BSP, reports M Hasan.

india Updated: Feb 05, 2007 20:54 IST
M Hasan
M Hasan

The Indian Justice Party (IJP), one of the constituents of Jan Morcha Alliance (JMA) founded by former Prime Minister VP Singh and Raj Babbar, on Monday said that it had no "fight" with ruling Samajwadi Party as IJP’s main rival was Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP).

Addressing mediapersons after failed attempt to storm BSP’s Prerna Kendra, popularly known as Dalit Temple in Lucknow on Monday, IJP president Udit Raj said some JMA members had been "soft pedaling" the BSP. Strangely while VP-Raj Babbar have been carrying on campaign against SP, Raj said his movement was against "Mayawati and not against Chief Minister Mulayam Singh Yadav, who has no stake in Bahujan Andolan".

Raj’s hostile attitude towards JMA leadership gave ample indication that VP’s morcha has been faltering in the state because its various constituents have been pulling in different directions. Ever since its foundation both VP Singh and Raj Babbar have avoided opening front against Mayawati.

Even in the past VP Singh had reportedly expressed his displeasure with Udit Raj over diverting the attention by taking on Mayawati. While Raj Babbar made it clear that Jan Morcha did not want to dilute its movement against the SP, Rai said "hamari main fight BSP se hai" (our main fight is with BSP).

The IJP workers had planned to enter highly fortified BSP’s Prerna Kendra on Monday to garland statues of Dr BR Ambedkar and Kanshi Ram. However the police scuttled their efforts. The police had to use force to disperse the workers at Vidhan Sabha.

The workers also tried to snatch the rifle of a cop. Rai said around a dozen workers were injured in the police action. While Raj said the march was peaceful for "Darshan", the IJP secretary Sarika Chaudhury said "we had planned to garland Mayawati’s statue with shoes". The Prerna Kendra, under complete control of BSP, has restricted entry. It is thrown open only on special occasions on the instructions of Mayawati.

Raj said "the IJP workers want to know what Mayawati has been hiding there". He said after ten days fresh attempt would be made to enter the monument. Raj said it was a property of "Bahujan Samaj" and "Mayawati would not be allowed to grab it".

Even though IJP has been desperately trying to make dent into Mayawati’s Dalit base, its electoral performance during the last two elections had been miserable. Raj said JMA was not a participant in IJP’s temple entry movement. However Raj said he would talk to JMA members for future programmes.

E-mail M Hasan: mhasan@hindustantimes.com

First Published: Feb 05, 2007 20:54 IST