Cong leaders break bread with Dalits, woo them

Union ministers Jitin Prasada and Pradeep Jain Aditya, party MPs, including Mohammad Azharuddin, and state unit president Reeta Bahuguna Joshi spent a night at Dalit homes following in the footsteps of Rahul Gandhi.

Former Indian captain and party MP from Moradabad, Mohammad Azharuddin, spent a few hours on Friday night at a Dalit household in his Lok Sabha constituency. Curiously, he had to face some difficult questions on the development of the area.

Union minister of state for rural development Pradeep Jain, who spent a night at a Dalit home in Jhansi district, felt that such visits would enable them to “understand” the problems of the Dalits. Details of the leaders’ visit were made available to the media in advance, and as such the media accompanied them, turning their “supposed-to-be-private programme” into a public event.

Meanwhile, BSP circles dismissed the visits as “eyewash” and “drama” for gaining the support of the Dalits. “During its (Congress) successive regimes, the Congress has turned a deaf ear to the Dalits’ concerns,” quipped a senior BSP leader.

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