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My ultimate goal is to become the PM, Mayawati reiterates

By Sharat Pradhan in Lucknow
June 19, 2009 18:55 IST
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Obviously threatened by the beginning of revival of the Congress party in Uttar Pradesh, Bahujan Samaj Party president and state Chief Minister Mayawati on Friday once again displayed her obsession to don the prime minister's mantle.

Addressing an almost impromptu public rally outside the district collectorate in Lucknow on Friday afternoon, she sought to make it loud and clear that she was not prepared to give up on account of the reverses at the recently concluded Lok Sabha elections.

"I am aware that the opposition had ganged up to prevent the daughter of a dalit (read Mayawati) from occupying the prime minister's chair," she said.

"It was amply evident that they struck an underhand deal amongst themselves to ensure that I do not become prime minister, because their casteist mindset cannot digest the rise of a dalit to the top office," Mayawati sought to point out.

"And they also knew that if Mayawati were to get a foothold at the Centre, it would not be easy to uproot her from there," she went on to add.

As if to convey that she was no more in a hurry to don the mantle of the country's prime minister, she went on to emphasise, "And it does not matter to me how many more years it will take to achieve my ultimate goal."

To buttress her point, Mayawati went on to cite statistics to prove that her party's vote share in UP "was still way ahead of all other political rivals."

Yet, she made it a point to repeatedly point out that but for the alleged conspiracy by Congress, Bhartiya Janata Party (BJP) and Samajwadi Party (SP), she would have been the country's prime minister.

A large part of her hour-long address was aimed at accusing the opposition in general and Congress in particular for attempting to break the 'bhai-chara' (social harmony) that BSP has been trying to promote as a part of its mission to break caste barriers and bring upper caste Hindus and Muslim minorities together with dalits on the party plank.

While she was scheduled to address such rallies in three cities -- Azamgarh in east UP , Lucknow in central UP and Ghaziabad in the western corner of the state, Mayawati chose to cancel her trip to Azamgarh and confined her rallies to Lucknow and Ghaziabad. Reports said that poor turnout at Azamgarh put her off and she ordered her aircraft to be flown over to Ghaziabad.

"I am aware that the opposition parties have been conspiring to break the social engineering campaign undertaken by us; but let me tell you that no matter what they do, they would not be able to deter me from pursuing my ultimate mission," Mayawati told the gathering at both the places.

She regarded that alleged "anti-dalit" approach of these parties as a glaring example of the "rabid caste politics." Notwithstanding the label of a hardcore casteist party that BSP has been widely known to carry, she sought to term all other parties as "casteists."

And that was the reason why she chose to declare Friday's demonstration as the beginning of a nationwide campaign to condemnation the "casteist" approach of all other parties to whom she gave a "sharm karo" (feel ashamed) call .

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Sharat Pradhan in Lucknow