Bahujan Samaj Party supremo Mayawati is all set to sound the bugle for the 2012 political battle from Lucknow on Tuesday, which also marks the sixth death anniversary of her mentor and party founder Kanshi Ram.
Slated to emerge as a grand show of her party's strength well before the next Lok Sabha elections, the rally is expected to draw lakhs of supporters from different corners of the state.
Significantly, Mayawati is also expected to announce her party's final decision on the key question of continuation of support to the United Progressive Alliance regime at the Centre. She will also declare her stand on the crucial issue of Foreign Direct Investment in retail, which she had kept up her sleeve for so long.
As many as 11 special trains have been chartered by the BSP to bring its volunteers from various parts of the state, where local BSP leaders have been assigned the task of mobilising people for the mega event. Besides, many would be arriving by road.
What has given a shot in the arm to Tuesday's rally is the Akhilesh Yadav government's abrupt decision to discontinue the public holiday on Kanshi Ram's death anniversary. "The actual turnout of people for the rally is going to far exceed our estimates as the common BSP supporter has been badly provoked on account of the disrespect shown to the party founder by the Samajwadi Party government," observed state BSP chief Swani Prasad Maurya.
"While we never expected the present government to give due recognition to a great social reformer like Kanshi Ram, we hoped that good sense would prevail and the Samajwadi Party would, least of all, not show disrespect to the departed personage," he added.
Railway authorities have made special arrangements for the arrival and departure of BSP volunteers. All trains carrying the BSP workers, will arrive and leave from platform number 1 which will remain closed to routine traffic and passengers. And to avoid overcrowding on the platform, the neighbouring railway sports stadium has been declared as a holding area. The rally organisers propose to bring the volunteers in batches from the venue -- Rama Bai Ambedkar Maidan -- first to the stadium, from where again they would proceed in accordance with the departure of different special trains.
Special care was being taken by the railways to avert a repeat of the stampede at the Lucknow railway station after a similar BSP rally, which left many dead, several years ago.