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  India   All India  17 Jul 2018  Knives out in BJP over changing city names

Knives out in BJP over changing city names

THE ASIAN AGE. | AMITA VERMA
Published : Jul 17, 2018, 5:45 am IST
Updated : Jul 17, 2018, 5:45 am IST

Savitri Bai Phule, it may be recalled, was one of the first MPs to speak out against the Modi government on the dilution of the SC/ST Act.

BJP MP Savitri Bai Phule
 BJP MP Savitri Bai Phule

Lucknow: BJP MP Savitri Bai Phule has now unfurled the banner of revolt against her own government in Uttar Pradesh. The MP has strongly opposed the state government’s move to change the name of Allahabad to Prayag Raj and Lucknow to Laxman Nagar. She has termed the move as “condemnable” and warned that the move would have serious consequences.

Savitri Bai Phule , who was elected as MP from Bahraich, has  also said that places named after dalit icons and leaders of minority communities should not be changed.

“There should not be any attempt to erase a part of history. Changing names of railway stations, roads, cities and organisations will not bring votes. This is an attempt to erase the identity of groups that identify with the existing names. The changing of names is designed to target the Bahujan Samaj and the minorities, in particular”, she said at a function here.

Savitri Bai Phule, it may be recalled, was one of the first MPs to speak out against the Modi government on the dilution of the SC/ST Act. She had said that her loyalty was to her people before the political party.

She held a “Bhartiya Samvidhan Bachao (Save Indian Constitution)” rally in Lucknow on April 1 where she said that there is a threat to Dr B.R. Ambedkar’s Constitution.

She alleged that the reservation system might be scrapped. After her revolt, other dalit MPs belonging to BJP and its allies also voiced their apprehensions on the issue.

The BJP dalit MP then demanded reservations in private jobs and in promotions. “A few Union ministers and BJP MPs under pressure from the RSS were hatching a conspiracy to amend the Constitution to scrap reservations. Atrocities against dalits, backward and minorities have increased manifold under the present regime. The SC/ST Commission, Backward, and Minority commission have been made ineffective bodies. We will not allow them to succeed in their conspiracy,” she stated.

She also demanded a caste-based census and increase in quota fixed for Dalits and backward. “The union government should conduct a caste-based census and extend reservations to Dalits, backward and also minorities as per their population in the country,” she said.

Asked about the fallout of her revolt against the party, the MP said, “I am not only BJP MP but a representative of Dalit community also. I am not worried about being sacked from the party for my anti-government stance. I will continue to raise issues of my community”.

Tags: savitri bai phule, modi government
Location: India, Uttar Pradesh, Lucknow