Playing the backward caste card in the run-up to the Lok Sabha elections,the Samajwadi Party launched two rath yatras Thursday from the party office in Lucknow.
Dubbed as Samajik Nyay Rath Yatra for empowerment of BCs and and Adhikar Rath Yatra for inclusion of 17 of them into the Scheduled Caste list,the rallies were jointly flagged off by SP president Mulayam Singh Yadav and Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav .
On the occasion,Mulayam alleged that the Congress and others were conspiring to end the reservation system and gave the call for Arakshan Badhao,Arakshan Bachao (Increase Reservation,Save Reservation).
The social movement for empowering the backwards has begun today,in the coming days,all political equations will be defeated and the SP will win, he said.
Making it clear that the yatras was an attempt to win the coming elections as well as empowering the backwards and the poor,Mulayam said: Everyone will now say we are doing it (yatras) for the elections. Yes,we are doing this for the elections. We are not saints and hermits. We have to win the elections.
On his attempts to get the 17 backward castes enlisted as SCs,the party chief said his government had sent a proposal to the Centre for including the BCs into the SC list in 2005 but the BSP government overturned the decision.
The present government,too,has sent a similar proposal to the Centre,he added.
The backward castes which the SP is seeking to be included in the SC list include Kashyap,Nishad,Bind,Mallah,Kahaar,Kumhar,Prajapati,Dheewar,Rajbhar,Bhar,Dheemar,Baatham,Turha,Gaur,Manjhi,Kewat and Machhua.
Targeting the Congress,Akhilesh said there were several scams in the UPA regime which were not easily understood by the common man despite his partys efforts. Through 2G,Congress committed a scam even in the air, he alleged.
The CM said the last time the SP took out a rath yatra,it resulted in the change of power in the state. When Netaji (Mulayam) took out a rath yatra,he formed the government. I,too,took out a rath yatra.
Terming the UPA government as anti-poor and anti-backward,the CM said the people at the Centre,be it the Congress or BJP,were not from amongst the poor,
The two SP rath yatras will cover 18 districts of eastern UP in the first phase before concluding in Azamgarh on October 29.
The rathyatras will continue till December 7 covering all districts and conclude in a Samajik Nyay rally on December 14 in Lucknow.