New Delhi: Former Congress chief Rahul Gandhi stated on Saturday that the party had approached Mayawati, the leader of the Bahujan Samajwadi Party (BSP), for an alliance before of the assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh, and offered her the position of chief minister, but she had declined the offer.
“We approached Mayawati and offered her the position of chief minister, but she did not respond,” Gandhi said. The Wayanad MP added that the BSP leader didn’t respond as she feared that the government would use CBI, ED and Pegasus to intimidate her. “Kanshi Ram Ji raised voice of Dalits in UP, though it affected Congress. This time she (Mayawati) didn’t fight for Dalit voices because there are CBI, ED and Pegasus,” he said.
Gandhi was addressing at the launch of Congress politician K Raju’s book, The Dalit Truth. The Samruddha Bharat Foundation collaborated with the Rajiv Gandhi Foundation to put on the event. Anurag Bhaskar and Jignesh Mevani were among the panellists.
Rahul Gandhi’s remarks have elicited no response from the BSP.
Polls were held in Uttar Pradesh earlier this year, with the Congress nearly decimated in the assembly, winning just two out of the 403 seats. The BSP, on the other hand, managed to win only one seat, with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) emerging victorious for a second term.
According to Gandhi, the use of intimation tactics by deploying agencies is corroding constitutional values. “Without institutions, we cannot protect the constitution,” he said. “The constitution is a weapon that BR Ambedkar gave us. But today, this weapon is useless.”
He said that the process of taking over these institutions began with the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi. “These institutions are with the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS),” he said.
Gandhi also discussed the political system’s treatment of Dalits, emphasising the necessity for immediate reform to end the marginalisation of minorities and other disadvantaged groups. “India is the only country in the world where a human will touch a dog, a horse, or a cockroach but refuse to touch another human,” he remarked.
The Congress leader also added that he was not in the pursuit of power like other politicians. “There’re politicians who’re in pursuit of power. They wake up in the morning and think how we will attain power and do this the whole day… and then sleep. The cycle repeats the next day. I was born at a power centre but I am not interested in it,” he said.
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