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‘BJP Following BSP’s Footsteps’: Upper Caste Leader Quits Party Over SC/ST Act Amendment

The former MLA claimed Dalits were never exploited by the upper caste and said the “resourceful” Dalits snatch jobs and other benefits from the deprived families.

Vivek Trivedi | News18

Updated:September 6, 2018, 11:28 PM IST
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‘BJP Following BSP’s Footsteps’: Upper Caste Leader Quits Party Over SC/ST Act Amendment
File photo of former BJP leader Laxman Tiwari.
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Bhopal: On a day when the Bharat Bandh call by upper castes groups in Madhya Pradesh worried the BJP, a former party legislator dealt a further blow by deciding to call it quits over the restoration of the original provisions of the SC/ST act. Laxman Tiwari said he was leaving because of the party’s excessive Dalit appeasing policies.

Tiwari was a prominent upper caste face of the BJP in Vindhya region, where caste has played a deciding role in electoral politics.

“I had in the past shut the casteist slurs from Kanshiram but the BJP is following footsteps of the BSP after coming to power. It decided to throw 72% of country’s population out to appease 28% voters (sic),” Tiwari told the media in Bhopal while announcing his decision to resign from primary membership of the BJP on Thursday.

“It seems there is a conspiracy to spread caste poison in the country and destroy the coming generations,” he added.

Tiwari, who was in the Army before venturing into politics by forming Sawarna Samaj Party in 1995, came down heavily on the ‘draconian’ SC/ST Act.

The former MLA claimed Dalits were never exploited by the upper caste and said the “resourceful” Dalits snatch jobs and other benefits from the deprived families.

“If agency like Vyapam conducts recruitment for government posts, kids of SCs and STs studying in shabby schools in villages won’t be selected but Dalit children enrolled in reputed schools would make it in the exam,” he claimed.

Tiwari announced he would undertake a political journey from Ujjain on September 7.

Tiwari had gained prominence by contesting Lok Sabha polls in 1996 and garnering over one lakh votes. He also fought assembly polls in 1998 and 2003.

A close aide of BJP senior leader Uma Bharti, he had merged his party with Bharti’s Bharatiya Jan Sakti party in 2005-06 when the former MP Chief Minister founded her own outfit after walking out of the BJP.

As BJS later merged with the BJP, Tiwari, who had won assembly poll on BJS ticket from Mauganj in Rewa in 2008, too joined the BJP in 2011.

Tiwari managed to get BJP ticket in 2013 assembly polls but due to a sharp division of upper caste votes in Mauganj, he lost to Congress’ Sukhendra Singh Bana by over 10,000 votes. This loss kickstarted his political decline as BJP leadership was upset with him for the poll debacle.

Itching to return to political mainstream, locals said Tiwari was looking for an opportunity to shun the BJP and the recent developments gave him the opportunity.

While resigning from BJP, Tiwari spoke bitterly against Congress suggesting he was in no mood to join hands with the opposition.

At Tikamgarh, a Mahila morcha officebearer of the BJP and four workers of BJYM also tendered resignation on Thursday. In the recent past, at least two low-rung BJP leaders have quit the party over party’s stand on SC/ST Act.
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