In what could bring fresh trouble for BSP in the time to come, its detractors used party founder Kanshiram’s 81st birth anniversary to claim his legacy, gather crowd, launch book containing his speeches and target chief Mayawati under two different banners — “Samajik Parivartan Manch” and “Manyawar Kanshiram Vichar Manch”.
Kanshiram’s younger brother, Dalbara Singh, along with former BSP minister Daddu Prasad (recently expelled by Mayawati), former BSP’s Chhattisgarh president Dauram Ratnakar, “Dalit” poet and writer A R Akela (used to write songs for BSP), retired IPS Devi Singh Ashok (once considered close to Mayawati) and several others gathered under the banner of “Samajik Parivartan Manch” in Lucknow and marked the day as “Bahujan Samaj Diwas”.
On the other hand, former BSP coordinator Jugal Kishore, gathered the crowd near Kanshiram statue in Gomti Nagar and announced a movement demanding that the statue of Kanshiram be installed in the premises of the Parliament and his birth anniversary (March 15) be declared a public holiday.
“BSP has detracted from its founder’s mission, which has led to its downfall. For vested interests, Kanshiramji’s mission, which was to uplift and bring Bahujan Samaj together, has been left far behind. I got the offer from this Manch to attend and give my view, which I accepted,” Dalbara, who had come all the way from Jalandhar, told The Indian Express.
Dalbara also launched a book of Kanshiram’s speeches compiled by Akela. Dalbara had come with his 27-year-old daughter Sukhjinder Kaur, who is a Professor based in Ludhiana.
“In one of his speeches, Kanshiram had said that it is easy to form BSP but difficult to form Bahujan Samaj. Thus with the message of brotherhood, we decided to come together and remember his mission and vision. It is for this reason that we have also compiled a book of his speeches to remind people of his real mission and vision,” said former BSP minister Daddu Prasad, who was recently expelled by Mayawati for anti-party activities.
Asked about whether all of them were planning to float a political front as well, Prasad said: “This is what Mayawati is also watching out for but as of now, we are not thinking about forming any political front. Our only aim is to spread the actual vision and mission of Kanshiram, who helped BSP come close to becoming one of the biggest parties in the country but has now lost its ground rather than gaining one.”
Prasad said that members of the Manch would travel all across the country with Kanshiram’s message.
Meanwhile, the BSP marked the 81st birth anniversary of its founder in Lucknow in a simple manner by gathering its cadre and senior party leaders from different parts of the state. The gathering paid tribute to the leader at Kanshiram Samajik Sthal.
Mayawati, who was not in the state, offered her tribute to Kanshiram at the Bahujan Prerna Kendra in Delhi.
In an official statement, Mayawati cited how BSP-led governments in the state have in the past helped achieve Kanshiram’s vision of bringing social change and economic freedom. She instead blamed NDA government at the centre “led by Prime Minister Narendra Modi for affecting the social equality, justice and social security” in the country. She alleged that the NDA government is working with a “casteist mindset”.
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