Lucknow: Independent legislator and former minister Raghuraj Pratap Singh a.k.a. Raja Bhaiyya, on Friday played a master stroke when he said that the purpose behind forming a new party was the “studied silence” all political parties on the issue of amendments in the SC/ST Act.
In a move that is bound to attract upper caste and OBCs to his new party, Raja Bhaiyya said, “The amendment in the SC/ST Act not only concerns a large section of society but also serves to alienate dalits from the social mainstream. All political leaders express concern on this issue in their drawing rooms but do not speak out in the legislature and Parliament or in the media.”
Raja Bhaiyya said, “The welfare of dalits cannot be ensured by segregating them in this manner. The law should be equal for all, Dr B.R. Ambedkar did not emphasise this segregation in the constitution. The governments have maintained a silence on the issue.”
He further said that if a dalit was murdered, his family was given compensation whereas if a non-dalit was murdered, he did not get any compensation. Similarly, if a dalit woman was raped, she was given compensation but not a women belonging to a non-dalit category who is a victim of the same crime.
“We want that anyone who is a victim of heinous crime like rape or murder should get compensated and should not be differentiated on basis of caste,” he stated.
“I am not against Dalits – in fact, Dalits form a sizeable number of my voters. I feel that the SC/ST Act is working against the interest of dalits,” he said.
Asked if he would ally with other parties, Raja Bhaiyya said, “You should ask other political parties if they share my views and would they be willing to come together on these issues”.
Raja Bhaiyya will be formally launching his new party on November 30 with a major rally in Lucknow.