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Mayawati suggests she is a far bigger leader than Sonia
January 16, 2008 16:51 IST
At a time when strains are showing between the Bahujan Samaj Party and the Congress, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati has virtually suggested that she is a far bigger leader than Sonia Gandhi [Images] and would like to become the first Prime Minister from the oppressed class.
The BSP supremo, in an autobiographical book, has not taken Gandhi's name but said that inheriting a political legacy is a different thing, but leading a social change as a revolutionary mission was an unique thing.
The nearly 1,000-page 'blue book', written in Hindi, gives her side of the story of the developments between early 2006 and the recent UP assembly polls. Mayawati describes it as the most difficult phase for the BSP movement.
In the book, she also reveals that the Bharatiya Janata Party had promised her support in 2003 for a full five-year term, if she agreed to an alliance with the saffron party in the Lok Sabha polls, which it wanted to advance. The BJP also wanted 60 of the 80 seats in the state as part of the tie-up. "This was the start of the deep conspiracies (against me)".
She says that there are many women in the country, at present, who are carrying out their political and social responsibilities. "But dispassionate observers will hardly find any example of a woman from an oppressed class leading a movement for self-respect of a huge section of society."
The BSP chief, in the book "Mere Sangharshmay Jeevan Evam BSP Movement Ka Safarnama (Volume 3)" (My Struggles and the Journey of the BSP Movement), says at the outset, "It is my endeavour to give a Prime Minister to the country to initiate social change and economic freedom for the people."
Recalling her inclusion in Newsweek's global list of top eight women, Mayawati says it is very rare that people belonging to the lower strata of society have been eulogised.
She says that her character, to confront the conspiracies against her fearlessly and taking them as challenges, has helped her and also helped the movement grow.
Releasing the book at her 52nd birthday function on Tuesday, Mayawati said she will write one book every year and release it on her birthday, to give a message to party workers and sympathisers.
Her principal secretary Shashank Shekhar Singh said that the Chief Minister, despite her hectic schedule, devotes around four to five hours to writing and one to two hours to reading.
Noting that the period in which the book has been written was the most difficult phase in the BSP movement, Mayawati says it was during this time that party-founder Kanshi Ram became seriously ill and she took over as the president of the organisation, amid grave challenges and difficulties.
She says detractors of the BSP lost no time in their attempts to put her in the dock after the illness of Kanshi Ram.
It was at this time that the BJP, which was in power at the Centre, sought to involve her in the Taj Corridor case to take political revenge and sought to demoralise her through constant media trial.
The book begins with a caption calling for the "capture of this temple of power through elections", with the photograph of Parliament House and of a statue of Babasaheb Ambedkar.
It starts with the call to the bahujans to become the rulers and exhorts them to turn the slogan -- Vote hamara, raj tumhara, nahin chalega (our vote, your rule, will not do any more), a reality by capturing the Parliament.
This, Mayawati says, would enable the rule of social justice and empowerment and help India return its lost glory to become self-sufficient, rich and prosperous.
"Honourable Babasaheb Ambedkar's statue points towards Parliament and urges Dalits, backwards, minorities and the poor among the upper castes to rise and capture power through the ballot to end helplessness and slavery and uplift yourself through your own efforts".
"Under my leadership, the BSP is now consistently engaged in and struggling to achieve this cherished aim. My effort is to give a Prime Minister, as per the wishes of the entire society, to initiate social change and economic freedom," the BSP supremo said.
In the book, Mayawati paints the Congress, the BJP and also other detractors of the BSP as 'status quoist forces', which chant the mantra of social justice just to gain votes. Mayawati added that she has been instrumental in making mince-meat of both the Congress and the BJP in Uttar Pradesh.