“Pal was very dear to us. How can BSP allot a ticket to (Atiq)
Ahmad who has been charged with killing one of our activists?” she had
By Amita Verma
March 9: The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) has decided to contest all 543 in the country. This will be the first time that the party will be asserting its pan-Indian presence in politics.
Talking to this correspondent, a senior BSP functionary said that the
idea behind the party’s decision to contest all Lok Sabha seats was to
substantially increase its vote percentage and also present itself as a
viable political alternative at the national level.
“This time, the BSP is all set for the next Lok Sabha elections,
we are aiming for a majority on our own. By contesting on all the seats
across the country, we want to assess our strength,” the party functionary added.
Besides, the BSP plans to employ its social engineering concept across the country during the election campaign.
“When Ms Mayawati campaigns in various states, she will highlight the
UP experiment and underline how the party’s ‘sarvjan’ concept has
changed the face of politics in the Hindi heartland,” the functionary
The BSP, so far refrained from contesting, has not contested all Lok Sabha seats because it did not have a party organisation
in other states. However, in the past two years, the BSP has managed to
build up an organisational network in almost every state and will be
testing the cadre strength of each state in the coming elections.
Interestingly, while national parties
like the Congress and the BJP are facing a dearth of candidates on some
seats, particularly in states where their political fortunes are down,
the BSP is facing a problem of plenty.
“Even in states like Andhra Pradesh
and Tamil Nadu, we have more than three or four claimants for every
seat. So far, we have not encountered even a single Lok Sabha seat for
which there are no takers in the party. In states like Madhya Pradesh
and Rajasthan, we are having problems in finalising the candidate list
due to the number of candidates,” said a senior party leader.
It may be recalled that in 2004, the Bahujan Samaj Party had contest
435 seats in the country and had won 19 from Uttar Pradesh alone.
The BSP had started contesting Lok Sabha elections for the first time in 1989 when it contested 245 seats and won three.
In 1991, the party fielded candidates on 243 seats and, again, won three. In 1996, 210 BSP candidates contested the Lok Sabha polls and nine emerged winner while in 1998, the party won 14 seats from among the 225 candidates that contested the polls.
JAIPUR - It’s time for the great Indian election circus and
political parties are doing everything to campaign - through posters,
cut-outs, flags and caps. The latest is flaunting tattoos of the party
symbol on cheeks, hands or even the chest.
Election campaign material manufacturers are busy handling orders
from political parties for tattoos with party symbols that are not only
cheaper but can be sported for as long as a week.
‘Looking at the enquiries from various political parties, we are
concentrating more on manufacture of tattoos,’ said V.N. Sharma,
proprietor of Raje Enterprises, a supplier of campaign material.
Sharma, who has been in this business for over three decades, said
that the main reason behind the growing popularity of the tattoos is
its cost effectiveness.
‘A tattoo costs between Rs.2 and 3 and looking at the Election
Commission’s guideline on campaign expenses, the parties are trying to
go in for a product that is cheaper, smaller and can be used for a few
days,’ Sharma told IANS.
‘The tattoo can be sported on the cheeks, hands, head or chest by the workers,’ he said.
The company has already started manufacturing tattoos for the Bahujan Samaj Party.
It’s just not tattoos - caps, stickers and mufflers with the party
symbol are also in vogue as they are much cheaper than flags and
A cap is made with the party’s name and logo printed on it and costs
between Rs.5 and 12 while a sticker, usually with the candidate’s name,
costs between Rs.1 and 5 per piece. A muffler costs Rs.3-10 per piece,
According to the suppliers, ‘mangalsutras’, symbol of marriage worn by women, radium stickers that glow in the night and
pouches with the party symbol printed on it are also catching the fancy
of political parties.
Mangulsutras with party symbols are becoming popular among the women workers.
‘Each mangalsutra costs Rs.30-35 per piece and workers are buying them for free distribution among women
activists,’ R.K. Singh, a manufacturer of campaign material said.
Kochi, Monday 9 March 2009: The Bahujan Samaj Party would go it
alone in Kerala in the coming Lok Sabha elections and contest all 20
parliamentary seats, a top party leader said here today.
Dr Suresh Mane,
BSP National General Secretary, told reporters that
they would not enter into any alliance or understanding with other
political parties. “The BSP’s policy is to have an alliance with people
rather than a political party,” he said.
The BSP would focus on various issues like the ‘failure’ of
Congress-led UPA Government in dealing with poverty, inflation,
farmers’ problems, employment-generation, terrorism, Naxalism, law and
order and attacks on minorities, he said.
Mane said party President and Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati
would arrive in Kerala on March 21 for campaigning and address an
election rally at Thiruvananthapuram.
“The party is also going all out to open our account in the state
and strengthen Mayawati’s journey towards the Prime Ministerial post,”
He said he was confident that BSP would make strong inroads in
Kerala and spring a surprise by unsettling the present election winning
As another election to the
parliament in India approaches, the question comes up “What are Indian
Muslims Thinking? What are the issues on the basis of which they will
vote for various parties? Are their issues the same as those of other
Indians or do they have some distinct issues of their own?
political, security and social situation in the country has been
turbulent in the last one year, to say the least. Several instances of
grievous terrorism have caused much tension between Muslims and Hindus.
The latest being the Pakistani militant group Lashkar-e-Taiba sponsored
attack on civilians in Mumbai in November 2008. Fortunately it did not
result in larger Hindu-Muslim conflagration in Mumbai. But the harsh
contrived police encounter against Muslim youth in Jamia Nagar and the
further harassment of peaceful Muslims in Azamgarh has sent a wave of
anger and complaint in the Muslim community throughout North India. Of
course the very bad situation of the victims of the 2002 genocide in
Gujarat remains unchanged and is causing much consternation in the
Thus despite the passage of time Security
remains the top concern of Muslims in almost every city in India. In
almost every major city in India Muslims do not have the confidence
that police will treat them with fairness. In most major cities Muslim
organizations have organized seminars where they have categorically
condemned terrorism and have issued fatwas (religious edicts) against
it and have prohibited Muslims from even looking in that direction as a
means to resolve their grievous complaints of injustice.
other major issue that is causing restlessness in the community is the
government’s and other parties’ failure to take any initiative in
implementing the Sachar Committee findings to uplift the extraordinary
backwardness of the Muslim community. The report was released over 2
years ago but in these two years other than some perfunctory low level
fixes by way of the HRD ministry’s Action Taken Report, no steps have
been taken to bring the findings of this report to fruition. The
government did not even bring the report for discussion in the
parliament or form a Parliamentary Committee to hold hearings and make
recommendations on it.
What is disappointing is that instead of
looking at the above grievous issues of the Muslim community, some
political parties tried to convert the US-India Nuclear Accord as an
issue of the Muslim community. That was a very self-serving and
misleading trick that some parties, that claim to be secular, played on
the Muslims. It had the potential of telling Hindus that instead of
having the interest of India at their heart they look at the interests
of other Muslim countries as of significance. Fortunately a lot of
sensible Muslim leaders opposed that political trickstry and emphasized
that the nuclear accord being good for India, it is also good for
In many elections in the past some political
parties have tried to make vote banks of the Muslims, a large number of
whom are illiterate, by making pronouncements that invoke the emotions
of Muslims, eg making Urdu the second language, closing schools for
half day on Fridays for Juma congregational prayers, visiting the tombs
of famous Muslim saints, lavish public praises for some Muslim
religious leaders etc. After half a century of such tricks the average
Muslims are tired of them. Today Muslims are not voting en-bloc for
any party. Instead in each constituency they are looking at the track
record of the parties and candidates, distinguishing their rhetoric and
ploys from their actions that impacted the community.
approaching elections Muslims are asking the various political parties
to give ironclad assurances that they will provide adequate security to
the community from organized violence and from police high-handedness;
and that they will implement programs to remove the inordinate
backwardness of the community in the areas of education and
socioecomics, such as implementing the Sachar Committee report.
most areas the bases on which Indian Muslims decide to vote for a party
or candidate are the same as those of other Indians. For instance the
issues of Muslim Aboriginal Inhabitants of Jambudvipa, that is, the Great Prabuddha Bharath are the same as those of Hindu and Christian Aboriginal Inhabitants of Jambudvipa, that is, the Great Prabuddha Bharath ; the issues of Muslim OBCs are the same as those of Hindu and
Christian OBCs. Mnay followers of the Father of the Constitution Dr. B.R. Ambedkar embaraced Buddhism and are happy. This trend will continue, since some religions believe in souls of Human Beings but not for other living beings and hence they can do whatever they want to them. There are believers who belive in 1st, 2nd, 3rd nd 4th rate souls and people without any soul and tey can do wahtever they want to do to them. But the Buddha never believed in soul and said all are equal. Therefore all the Aboriginal Inhabitants of Jambudvipa, that is, the Great Prabuddha Bharath who embaraced Buddhism are happy, well and secure.In low income neighborhoods in various cities, the
issues of Poor Muslims are the same as those of poor Hindus and
Christians, which is to improve the infrastructure of those localities
and provide growth opportunities.
Yet with Muslims often being
the target of police as suspect for acts of terrorism, seeking
safeguards from police harassment and brutality is a distinct issue of
the Muslim community. Similarly atrocious lack of schools in Muslim
majority areas in all cities, this is a specific issue of the Muslim
India’s Muslims are not looking for parties to promise
handouts or preferred treatment for them. Instead they are looking for
fair and equitable treatment, same as others Having been disappointed
with Congress and BJP the two major national parties, though they are really not national parties but Kichaddy parties with several local parties just coming in and going out.Muslim voters are
increasingly drawn to the only single national party, that is, Bahujan Samaj party, which is working for the welfare and happiness for entire people.
More than anything Muslims are keen on
supporting BSP that genuinely promote a secular
democratic structure for the nation where their distinct lifestyles and
heritage will be preserved as they integrate more in the nation’s
The next election is not likely to produce a hung Parliament, with the BSP party, holding the advantage.
AFTER the announcement of the schedule of what promises to be a
landmark general election, efforts to work out new political situation
have gathered even greater momentum and a frantic, no-holds-barred
character. India has always witnessed political haggling before major
elections. But this time, its reach and intensity are unprecedented.
In this muddled, uncrystallised scenario, four trends are apparent.
First, neither of the two major “national” blocs – the Congress-led
United Progressive Alliance (UPA) and the Bharatiya Janata Party
(BJP)-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) – commands an unambiguous
advantage, since they could not be termed as national parties as they have become kichadi parties with many local parties just coming in and going out.
The UPA has not yet firmed up a national-level alliance. The
Congress wants to go beyond State-level seat-sharing.
The NDA has shrunk from 24 parties to seven, of whom only the Janata
Dal (United), the Akali Dal and the Biju Janata Dal are sizeable. The
BJP is not even confident of winning only in Gujarat.. Recent elections show that it is generally on the defensive in
western and central India, which account for 40 per
cent-plus of its Lok Sabha members.
No major party is wooing the BJP, once a preferred partner. Its
“nation-in-danger-from-terrorism-Muslims-Pakistan” platform has made no impact. It has no programme with appeal outside the upper-caste
upper-class urban elite.
With the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) having decided
to chart its own course, there is unlikely to be a pre-election Third
Front in the north or nationally. What happens after the election is not a
matter of speculation but the party is certain to form the Government.
If a poll conducted by the THREE BASKETS STUDY CIRCLE is BSP will win in 273 seats and form the Government on its own.
Finally, some factors that influence election outcomes,
is famously, the “anti-incumbency burden”.
Similarly, the recent trend in which Uttar Pradesh’s Muslim
legislators and voters moved from the S.P. towards the BSP.
The Congress built the UPA on
the promise of providing an antidote to the NDA’s communal, divisive
and elitist policies.
The UPA pledged inclusive aam admi policies,
affirmative action for religious minorities and the underprivileged,
reassertion of secularism, and a return to balanced and independent
foreign and security policies. Its actual record is at best patchy, and
in some respects disappointing – witness the India-United States
The UPA failed to bring justice to the victims of the Gujarat pogrom
– Manmohan Singh did not utter the “G word” even once – and barring the
revision of communal textbooks, did little to defend and promote
secularism. The UPA, by and large, continued with the NDA’s neoliberal
policies. Recently, it squandered an opportunity to launch large-scale
public works to counter the economic slowdown, and instead gave a
Rs.65,000-crore bailout to various businesses, including automobiles,
civil aviation, real estate, and so on.
The UPA’s schemes have not fared
For instance, less than half the targets for village roads, rural
electrification and irrigation have been met. According to the
Comptroller and Auditor General, as much as Rs.51,000 crore allocated
to its flagship schemes for development and poverty alleviation and was
transferred to district authorities, non-governmental organisations and
autonomous bodies, with no account of whether or how it was spent.
The Centre’s Interim Budget announced no major
pro-poor measures. Allocations to the Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan, the
National Rural Health Mission (NRHM) and Drinking Water Mission hardly
Even the NREGA budget pales into insignificance beside the Rs.36,000-crore increase
in military spending. Counting Defence pensions, the increase works out
to an obscene Rs.40,000 crore. Much of this is to be used to buy new
weapons, many of them irrelevant to any notion of adequate defence but
vital to power projection beyond the South Asian region.
This splurge is not a rational response to the Mumbai terror
attacks: no long-range missiles, nuclear submarines, aircraft carriers,
amphibian craft or fighter-planes are needed to counter terrorism. The
rise is part of the Congress’ muscle-flexing vis-a-vis
Pakistan to counter the BJP’s charge that it is “soft” on terrorism.
The Congress is unlikely to gain by appropriating the BJP’s chauvinist
platform. It has always lost both credibility and votes by doing so.
If the Congress has failed to generate an imaginative mass appeal,
the UPA is even worse placed to retain its present strength. In 2004,
it performed spectacularly in Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Bihar,
Jharkhand, Delhi, Haryana and Himachal Pradesh, winning 129 of their
156 Lok Sabha contests.
It is highly improbable that the UPA can repeat this. In Tamil Nadu,
it has lost allies. In Bihar, the Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) is likely
to lose ground. In Gujarat, the UPA is unlikely
to retain 12 out of 26 seats, and in Assam 9 of out 14 seats.
Under the circumstances, the UPA’s seat tally may not be enough to form a government at the
Centre – unlike in 2004, when the Left’s 62 Members of Parliament
supported the alliance.
The other bidders
The NDA is not well placed to gain from the UPA’s stagnation. BJP will not improve its own score of 138 seats, the NDA’s tally is
unlikely to cross the mark.
That leaves the BSP, with its impressive recent electoral record,
the BSP can reproduce the Uttar Pradesh model in other States. Uttar
Pradesh is unique in having the highest proportion of upper castes in
the population (over 20 per cent), and numerous Aboriginal, inhabitants of Jambudvipa, that is, the Great Prabuddha Bharath (SC/STs) (17 per cent),
besides Muslims (19 per cent).Almost similar is the case in other statesd.It would surprise while its national
tally crosses 273.
As the programmes and strategies
are radically restructured by BSP to reflect a closer alignment with the needs
of the underprivileged and progressive social movements, BSP will form the Government at the Centre.
Chief Minister accused of running ‘one-man show’
‘Save BJP’ campaign by Shivappa, Yatnal, Mallikarjunaiah
Their main demand is for an end to ‘Operation Lotus’
BANGALORE: A group of prominent veterans of the Bharatiya Janata
Party have raised the banner of revolt against what they describe as
Chief Minister B.S. Yeddyurappa’ “one-man show” in the party. They have
decided on a “Save BJP” campaign, which will be launched in about three
Disclosing this to presspersons here on Monday, BJP leader B.B.
Shivappa said that to begin with the campaign would, apart from
himself, include the former Deputy Speaker of the Lok Sabha S.
Mallikarjunaiah and the former Union Minister of State for Railways
Basanagouda R. Patil Yatnal. The nature of the campaign would be
finalised in consultation with these leaders, he said.
Mr. Shivappa, who served as State BJP president for six years and
was an MLA and an MLC for a total of 10 years, made it clear that they
were not demanding any post or position, but wanted the party to be
liberated from what he termed the dictatorial attitude of Mr.
Yeddyurappa. “The Chief Minister should focus on the Government and
leave party affairs to loyal workers who are not part of the
Their main demand is that the party should end ‘Operation Lotus’,
under which leaders from Opposition parties have been lured to the BJP
and fielded as candidates in elections. Mr. Shivappa said ‘Operation
Lotus’ had created heartburn among loyal party workers at whose cost
outsiders were being given posts and positions.
He cautioned that the party’s performance in the Lok Sabha elections
was likely to be affected if the Chief Minister did not correct his
ways. In a bid to retain power, the party had lost sight of the
principles on which it had been formed. “It is no longer a party with a
difference,” he said.
Mr. Shivappa took exception to the manner in which Mr. Yeddyurappa’s
son, B.Y. Raghavendra, was nominated to contest the Lok Sabha elections
from Shimoga, ignoring loyal party workers.