Cong may name Dalit Prime Minister ahead of polls: Maya
HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times
New Delhi, October 14, 2011
Unveiling an 84-acre grand memorial dedicated to Dalit icons BR
Ambedkar, Jyotiba Phule and Kanshi Ram in Noida on Friday, UP chief
minister Mayawati claimed the Congress could
temporarily install a Dalit like Meira Kumar or Sushil Kumar Shinde as
Prime Minister before assembly polls in the state next year to
hoodwink the community and deflect attention from the 2G scam.
She, however, was confident that Dalits - 21% of UP's population -
would only vote for her.
"Out of fear of the BSP, it is possible the Congress may make Meira
Kumar or Sushil Kumar Shinde prime minister for some time," Mayawati
Mayawati said the Congress had not made Kumar's father Jagjiwan Ram
Prime Minister "because he was a Dalit", but may now put a Dalit in
the top post "with a heavy heart".
Congress leader Digvijaya Singh responded to this: "Dr Manmohan Singh
is an honest Prime Minister and there is no vacancy in the Prime
Minister's post at present."
Mayawati also said that despite ruling UP for 38 years, the Congress
did nothing for its poor.
Pointing out that it was the Congress that worked for Dalits, Singh
said, "If memorials are built in memory of Dalit leaders, we are
happy. But one doesn't understand Mayawati erecting her own statue and
also garlanding it. From Nehru, Indira Gandhi to Sonia Gandhi, we have
all worked for Dalits. We gave them reservation. But she does vote
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi has been attempting to recapture this
vote, once a mainstay of the Congress' rainbow coalition of upper
castes, Dalits and Muslims.
Defending the Rs 685-crore Rashtriya Dalit Prerna Sthal, Mayawati
pointed to memorials of "Congress leaders" west of the Yamuna and said
the majority of the cost for the memorial built by her came from
She also accused the Centre of "misusing" the CBI to implicate her in
corruption cases, claiming Congress chief Sonia Gandhi had in 2003
promised her "justice" in the disproportionate assets case if the
party returned to power but did not "keep her promise".
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