UP polls: Is BSP chief Mayawati's muted campaign part of some grander design?

the latest tech news, global tech news daily, tech news today, startups, usa tech, asia tech, china tech, eu tech, global tech, in-depth electronics reviews, 24h tech news, 24h tech news, top mobile apps, tech news daily, gaming hardware, big tech news, useful technology tips, expert interviews, reporting on the business of technology, venture capital funding, programing language

UP polls: Is BSP chief Mayawati's muted campaign part of some grander design?
© Provided by Firstpost UP polls: Is BSP chief Mayawati’s muted campaign part of some grander design?

For years, Uttar Pradesh elections were incomplete without Mayawati’s (aka Behenji) savage putdowns, stinging insults and scathing criticism of the Opposition. Her incessant quest for power meant high-voltage campaigns with lots of drama and histrionics.

the latest tech news, global tech news daily, tech news today, startups, usa tech, asia tech, china tech, eu tech, global tech, in-depth electronics reviews, 24h tech news, 24h tech news, top mobile apps, tech news daily, gaming hardware, big tech news, useful technology tips, expert interviews, reporting on the business of technology, venture capital funding, programing language

But this time around, she has, so far, played reticent. A muted campaign, some vague tweets and the occasional sound byte adding to the mystery.

As president of the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), there is a lot riding on her. The party is contesting all 403 seats alone although she is personally not contesting.

Global Tech News Daily

Then why choose to remain in the shadows?

While there is no clear answer there are definite pointers. A key assumption being, she is playing along with the BJP as part of its B team. There are no happy coincidences in politics.

Global Tech News Daily

Mayawati’s past involving allegations of disproportionate assets, cases registered by the CBI, the Taj Corridor controversy of awarding preferred contracts and alleged kickbacks definitely impacts her present. While she has been cleared in most cases but the sword of suspicion still hangs over her head.

Legal experts say the clearances are based on technicalities, implying they can always pop up again like a bad nightmare. Is that the sword which makes her restless and prone to subjugation?

Lucknow’s corridors of power talk about persistent pressure from government agencies. Besides, she seems to specialise in losing her flock. She had 19 MLAs in 2017. The number is now down to seven. Most have quit and joined rival parties.

Key BSP players such as Nand Kishore and KK Gautam have left while BSP’s legislative party leader Lalji Verma and Akbarpur MLA Ram Achal Rajbhar have been expelled. This is a big problem for BSP.

There is neither continuity nor consistency.

There is definite grumbling about her being soft on the BJP. Also, party old-timers complain of tickets being hawked on ideology and winnability taking a backseat.

Ironically, the only stable face is that of MP SC Mishra, whose son Kapil Mishra is involved with Brahmin social engineering for the party. There is further speculation as to how long would SC Mishra last.

Mayawati has frittered away several of the gains of the past. Inability to carry through infrastructural reforms, create a strong organisation and second-string leadership coupled with lack of an effective communication wing have further added to her woes.

BSP watchers say she is insecure about a strong second-in-command, who could overshadow her, and out of touch with the youth cadre and ambitious MLAs and MPs. And the growing list of expulsions has led to uncertainty within the ranks.

And then there are the potential legacy usurpers such as The Bhim Army Ekta Mission. The party wants to be seen as a part of Kanshiram’s Ambedkarite legacy. The Bhim Army’s flamboyant leader, Chandrashekhar Azad, has an appeal across caste, religion and regional lines. He is contesting against Yogi Adityanath from Gorakhpur.

Surveys give BSP anywhere between 15 and 20 seats. So why then is behenji still relevant? She has served four separate terms as Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh. Her party focuses on a platform of social change for Bahujans, more commonly known as Other Backward Castes, Scheduled Castes and Scheduled Tribes as well as converted minorities from these castes.

She was chief minister briefly in 1995 and again in 1997, then from 2002 to 2003 and from 2007 to 2012. Her power stems from millions of Dalits across India for whom she is an icon. She is adept at fundraising for the party and her birthdays are almost always a show of strength.

Behenji’s Dalit vote bank can prevent the fight from getting too bi-polar, ensure more three-cornered contests and block the Samajwadi Party from broadening its OBC coalition. All this, of course, benefits the ruling BJP. Mayawati might not be the king this time around but she could play kingmaker.

I have met and interviewed Mayawati several times over the past two decades. She remains forthcoming, aggressive, pugnacious: never backing down from a fight. Bureaucrats, who have worked with her in the past, talk of her being a strong administrator and a crafty tactician.

Mayawati’s rise from humble beginnings has been called a “miracle of democracy” by former prime minister PV Narasimha Rao. In 1993, her mentor Kanshi Ram formed a coalition with the Samajwadi Party and Mayawati became the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh in 1995. She was the first female Scheduled Caste chief minister in India.

In 1997 and in 2002 she was chief minister with outside support from the BJP, the second time only for a year due to BJP withdrawing support.

To understand the rise of Mayawati better, it is important to take a quick look at what she inherited from Kanshiram and where she took the game.

The Dalit Shoshit Samaj Sangharsh Samiti, abbreviated as DS-4 was founded on 6 December, 1981, by Kanshi Ram to organise Dalits and other oppressed groups of India. DS4’s slogan was “Brahmin, Thakur, Bania chhor, baaki sab hain DS-4”. (“Leaving Brahmins, Thakurs and Banias, everyone else is DS-4.”).

The organisation was absorbed by the Bahujan Samaj Party in 1984.

Gauging the simmering resentment against the political ostracism towards Dalits, Kanshiram recruited disgruntled intellectuals and government employees to give wheels to the caravan of the Bahujan movement, writes Suraj Yengde, the author of “Caste Matters.” “Educated and with a confident outlook, the young breed of Dalits are now aiming to give life to Ambedkar’s vision — of becoming a part of the ruling class of the country.”

I recall a bunch of young reporters reached the then Allahabad (Prayagraj) in 1986 when VP Singh contested from there and won. Kanshiram was pitted against him. He knew winning was out of the question. But he was smart enough to know that if you are contesting against a big candidate the media focus would also be on you. Hence, your message also gets through. Kanshiram met the group of four reporters at a hotel.

They introduced themselves by name and association. All was fine till the fourth person gave his name. He was a Brahmin. That was enough to trigger a rant by Kanshiram. He kept complaining how the Brahmins had treated the Dalits and other backwards so poorly not only in Uttar Pradesh but in India. The reporters tried to reason with him. He would not relent. Ironically, this is the same party which is now being steered by a Brahmin, SC Mishra.

The backstory of Satish Chandra Mishra is that he played an important hand when social engineering of upper castes worked for Mayawati in the 2007 elections. The fact also remains that many were disenchanted with the style of working of Samajwadi Party’s Mulayam Singh Yadav. So, this was a matter of timing, anti-incumbency and pushback. As a result, BSP benefited.

Then, SC Mishra’s stature grew further as he began handling her legal cases when the pressure piled up. She remained indebted to him because of this big service. Mishra was given a fleet of government cars, power and had an important say in ticket distribution. His son Kapil and son-in-law now play a crucial role in social engineering of Brahmins.

Cut to 2022 – Mayawati still shows occasional sparks of aggression. She took a dig at Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath saying he should tell the people of the state that the monastery where he lives most of the time in Gorakhpur, is “not lesser than a big bungalow.”

She exhorts people not to waste their votes on the Congress as they cannot even decide on their chief minister face. Yet, she was criticised during the COVID pandemic phase for “advising” the Yogi government how to tackle the problem and what steps to take.

Behenji has avoided holding rallies but her party is ostensibly working at the booth level. Their battle cry is …har booth ko jitaana hai…(make every booth win) reminiscent of BJP tactics. Some watchers aligned with BSP say don’t rule her out, she can spring surprises. Currently, that seems like a bridge too far. Her first rally is supposed to be on 2 February in Agra.

When asked about Mayawati’s current political fortunes, an old-timer in Lucknow quipped: “She is between the precipice and the deep blue sea. She is sandwiched between the Centre on one side and time on another.”

Read all the Latest News, Trending NewsCricket News, Bollywood News,

India News and Entertainment News here. Follow us on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.

News Related

OTHER NEWS

New York Rangers get another comeback win to force Game 7 vs. Pittsburgh Penguins

PITTSBURGH — How many times can the New York Rangers dig themselves into a hole and climb back out? At least one more, as of Friday night. The Blueshirts came ... Read more »

Wilson, balanced Aces cruise to 96-73 victory over Dream

COLLEGE PARK, Ga. (AP) — A’ja Wilson scored 15 points, Kelsey Plum had 14 points and 11 assists and the Las Vegas Aces rolled to a 96-73 victory over the ... Read more »

EXPLAINER: Why frustration lingers in Okinawa 50 years later

The Associated PressFILE – U.S. Marine Corps Sgt. Mike Anglen of Turner, Ore., center, stands atop a cliff as Sgt. Bryan Wallace of Pikin, Ill., waits for his turn before ... Read more »

Astros beat Nationals 6-1 for 11th straight victory

WASHINGTON (AP) — Jose Altuve homered on the first pitch of the game, Yordan Alvarez and Yuli Gurriel also went deep and the Houston Astros extended their winning streak to ... Read more »

Kreider scores late, Rangers edge Pens 5-3 to force Game 7

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Chris Kreider’s long slap shot bounced over Louis Domingue and into the net with 1:28 left and the New York Rangers beat the Pittsburgh Penguins 5-3 on ... Read more »

Astros push winning streak to 11, roll past Nationals 6-1

WASHINGTON (AP) — Jose Altuve homered on the first pitch of the game, and Yordan Alvarez and Yuli Gurriel also went deep to help the Houston Astros extend their winning ... Read more »

Moustakas, Drury power Reds to 8-2 victory over Pirates

PITTSBURGH (AP) — Mike Moustakas homered twice and Brandon Drury drove in four runs to break out of a slump and lead the resurgent Cincinnati Reds to an 8-2 victory ... Read more »

Peterson's bases-loaded walk lifts Brewers over Marlins 2-1

MIAMI (AP) — Jace Peterson walked against Anthony Bender with the bases loaded in the ninth inning and the Milwaukee Brewers beat the Miami Marlins 2-1 Friday night. After starters ... Read more »

Padres: No cancer found during manager Bob Melvin's prostate surgery

SAN DIEGO (AP) — The San Diego Padres say no cancer was found when manager Bob Melvin had prostate surgery on Wednesday. Melvin, 60, was recovering at home Friday after ... Read more »

Ogunbowale, Gray help Wings rally past Mystics, 94-86

WASHINGTON (AP) — Arike Ogunbowale scored 27 points, Allisha Gray had 21 and the Dallas Wings overcame a 15-point second-quarter deficit to beat the Washington Mystics 94-86 on Friday night. ... Read more »

Resigning North Dakota senator led lawmakers in travel costs

The Associated PressFILE – North Dakota Sen. Ray Holmberg listens during a joint House and Senate Appropriations Committee meeting at the Capitol in Bismarck, N.D., on Jan. 7, 2009. Holmberg, ... Read more »

Residents in picturesque California county hit with gas prices topping $7 a gallon

A California county known for its spectacular mountains and proximity to Yosemite National Park has been paying the nation’s highest gas prices. Read more »

Boudreau to return as coach of Canucks next season

VANCOUVER, British Columbia (AP) — Bruce Boudreau will return as coach of the Vancouver Canucks next season after helping to turn the struggling NHL club around as a midyear replacement. ... Read more »

New Zealand leader Jacinda Ardern tests positive for COVID

On Location: May 13, 2022 Catch up on the developing stories making headlines.The Associated Press WELLINGTON, New Zealand — New Zealand Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern has tested positive for COVID-19 ... Read more »

Today in History for May 14th

Highlights of this day in history: Colonists go ashore in Virginia to set up Jamestown; Lewis and Clark begin to explore Louisiana Territory; Israel founded; Skylab launched; Movie producer George ... Read more »

Twitter CEO expects Elon Musk acquisition to close, addresses spending cuts

Musk is awaiting details supporting calculations that spam, fake accounts represent less than 5% of Twitter's users Read more »

Padres: No cancer found during Bob Melvin's prostate surgery

SAN DIEGO (AP) — The San Diego Padres say no cancer was found when manager Bob Melvin had prostate surgery on Wednesday. Melvin, 60, was recovering at home Friday after ... Read more »

Renovated NYC museum shows indigenous perspectives

The American Museum of Natural History in New York City recently finished a major renovation of its exhibition on the native peoples of the northwest coast of North America. Curators ... Read more »

Police release 911 calls in Gilgo Beach case

A woman who disappeared in a beach community on New York’s Long Island more than a decade ago, sparking an investigation into a possible serial killer, said “there’s somebody after ... Read more »

Academy Awards set 2023 Oscars for March 12

The Associated PressFILE – Oscar statue on the red carpet at the Oscars on Sunday, March 27, 2022, at the Dolby Theatre in Los Angeles. Next year’s Academy Awards will ... Read more »

Actor Fred Ward, of 'Tremors,' 'The Right Stuff' fame, dies

The Associated PressFILE – Fred Ward, a cast member in “30 Minutes or Less,” poses at the premiere of the film in Los Angeles on Aug. 8, 2011. Ward, a ... Read more »

Judge refuses to drop elections suit against Trump, media

NEW YORK — A Colorado judge on Friday denied motions to dismiss a defamation lawsuit filed by an election systems worker against former President Donald Trump’s campaign, two of its ... Read more »

Q&A: Becky G unveils every side of herself in latest album

The Associated PressFILE – Becky G appears at the Oscars in Los Angeles on March 27, 2022. Beck G’s latest album is “Esquemas.” (AP Photo/Jae C. Hong, File) NEW YORK ... Read more »

North Korea reports 21 new deaths as it battles COVID-19 outbreak

SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea reports 21 new deaths as it battles COVID-19 outbreak. Read more »

North Korea confirms 21 new deaths as it battles COVID-19

SEOUL, South Korea — North Korea says 21 people died and 174,440 people were newly found with fever symptoms on Friday alone as the country scrambles to slow the spread ... Read more »

White Sox place Giolito on COVID list, activate Vaughn

The Chicago White Sox placed ace Lucas Giolito on the COVID-19 injured list and activated outfielder Andrew Vaughn following a rehab assignment with Triple-A Charlotte on Friday. Giolito began experiencing ... Read more »

Traded back and forth, Ford learns to live out of suitcase

NEW YORK (AP) — Mike Ford has learned to travel light — and quickly. Since the start of the season, the 29-year-old first baseman has played for Tacoma, San Francisco ... Read more »

Falcon 9 rocket launches Starlink satellites

A SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket launched 53 Starlink satellites to low-Earth orbit from California on Friday. (May 13) Read more »

Celtics' Robert Williams remains out for Game 6 vs. Bucks

MILWAUKEE (AP) — Boston forward/center Robert Williams missed his third straight game with an injured left knee as the Celtics tried to keep their season alive Friday night in Game ... Read more »

Padres sign Robinson Canó, plan to use him off the bench

ATLANTA (AP) — The San Diego Padres have signed veteran second baseman Robinson Canó to a major league contract and plan to use him as a left-handed bat off the ... Read more »

WNBA star's Russia detention extended by 1 month

The lawyer for WNBA star Brittney Griner says her pre-trial detention in Russia has been extended by one month. Alexander Boykov told The Associated Press the relatively short extension indicated ... Read more »

Louisiana justices toss COVID-related charges against pastor

Hundreds of thousands of Americans fighting long-haul symptoms from COVID-19 Dr. David Putrino from Mount Sinai Health System and COVID long-hauler Joel Fram discuss the long-term effects of the disease.The ... Read more »

Sandy Hook lawsuits against Alex Jones on track to resume

The Associated PressFILE – This Tuesday, Dec. 11, 2018, photo shows radio show host and conspiracy theorist Alex Jones at Capitol Hill in Washington. The Sandy Hook families’ lawsuits against ... Read more »

Rockies' Bryant closer to return after cortisone shot

DENVER (AP) — Colorado Rockies outfielder Kris Bryant took swings in the cage Friday for the first time since he was sidelined with a sore back nearly three weeks ago ... Read more »

Mariners demote Jarred Kelenic to minors after poor start

NEW YORK (AP) — Rather than make his Citi Field debut against the team that traded him, Jarred Kelenic was demoted to Triple-A Tacoma by the Seattle Mariners on Friday ... Read more »

Biden: ASEAN partnership 'critical' in this moment

Looking to strengthen ties, President Joe Biden welcomes leaders from the Association of Southeast Asian Nations to Washington for the first time. “We’re launching a new era in U.S.-ASEAN relations,” ... Read more »

Phil Mickelson will not defend his title at next week's PGA Championship

Phil Mickelson caught lightning in a bottle last year at Kiawah Island, winning a major championship at 50 years of age. The fairways flooded, and the golf world stood and ... Read more »

Tennessee Titans' Malik Willis on Ryan Tannehill's mentorship comments: 'Everything is cool'

The Tennessee Titans didn’t take issue with Ryan Tannehill’s comments about mentoring third-round rookie Malik Willis. Willis and coach Mike Vrabel were asked about Tannehill’s scrutinized remarks following the first ... Read more »

Lawyers plan suit against Lufthansa over Jewish passengers

Lawyers for 26 passengers said Friday they told Lufthansa that they will sue the German airline for refusing to let members of a large group of Orthodox Jewish passengers board ... Read more »

Wild face offseason after yet another early ouster

While the Minnesota Wild were stacking up franchise records and securing the extra home game for the first round, general manager Bill Guerin carefully acknowledged a “great year” for the ... Read more »