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  India   Politics  26 Jun 2018  BSP scouting for youth leaders as Bhim Army grows

BSP scouting for youth leaders as Bhim Army grows

THE ASIAN AGE. | AMITA VERMA
Published : Jun 26, 2018, 2:24 am IST
Updated : Jun 26, 2018, 2:24 am IST

The BSP never had any frontal organisation for youth and the Bahujan Volunteer Force was essentially trained as a crowd management force.

BSP Supremo Mayawati. (Photo:PTI)
 BSP Supremo Mayawati. (Photo:PTI)

Lucknow: Unnerved by the growing influence of the Bhim Army, an organisation of dalit youths, in western Uttar Pradesh, the Bahujan Samaj Party is now scouting for youth leaders for the party.

Ms Mayawati now understands that unless the party gains youth power, it would be difficult for the BSP to regain lost ground in the state. With nearly 65 per cent of the voters in the state below 35 years of age, the BSP seems to be an ageing party.

 

In sharp contrast, the Samajwadi Party has a charismatic young leader in Akhilesh Yadav, while the Congress is pushing forward Rahul Gandhi as the leader of the new Congress. The BJP chief minister in UP, Yogi Adityanath, is also one of the youngest chief ministers.

The BSP , on the other hand, has almost no young leadership — many have left and others have been elbowed out.

Since 2006, after the death of Kanshi Ram, Ms Mayawati did not allow any second rung leadership to flourish and youth were completely sidelined.

The BSP never had any frontal organisation for youth and the Bahujan Volunteer Force was essentially trained as a crowd management force.

 

Last year, the BSP president had appointed her brother Anand Kumar as vice president and it was believed that he would enroll youths into the party organisation. However, two months ago, Ms Mayawati removed Anand Kumar from the party post.

Ms Mayawati, party sources said, has now asked all divisional and district coordinators to ensure that 50 per cent of all organisational posts are reserved for youth. In the Bhaichara committees too, the BSP president wants greater representation of youth.

Young workers will be holding meetings of the youths under the banner of Dr Ambedkar Manch and gradually usher them into the BSP.

Tags: bhim army, bahujan samaj party, mayawati