BSP chief assures special status to Odisha
BSP supremo Mayawati on Sunday slammed religious conversion and asked members of weaker sections, Dalits and tribals to change the government instead of their religions.
“I understand that people from BJP and RSS visit remote areas of Odisha and persuade Adivasis and Dalits to go for reconversion in order to change their living standards. I am telling you not to change religion, but governments both in the State and the Centre,” Mayawati told a public meeting here.
Stating that about 50 per cent of Odisha’s population comprised tribals and Dalits, Mayawati said there had been no development of poor people even 65 years after Independence. She also highlighted the plights of poor people among the upper caste communities.
Blaming the economic policies of both Congress led UPA government and previous BJP led NDA regime at the Centre, she said “while a huge amount of black money is stashed in foreign banks, neither Congress nor BJP had made any effort to bring it back.”
She said Odisha remained poor and backward for ages due to faulty policies of successive governments in the state and the Centre. “We will fulfil Odisha’s demand of a special category State status if voted to power in Centre,” Mayawati said.
“We have reduced poverty in Uttar Pradesh and distributed unutilised government land to landless people. Same can be done in Odisha and elsewhere,” she said. Mayawati said “we do not have alliance with anyone in the state. BSP has put candidates in all the 21 Lok Sabha and 147 Assembly segments of Odisha.”