Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati on Tuesday extended her greetings to the nation on the occasion of Ambedkar Jayanti. Speaking to news agency ANI she said, "I pay respects to him on behalf of BSP and crores of his followers. He spent his life ensuring that Dalits, Adivasis and other marginalized communities live with self-respect. BSP was established today in 1984 to fulfil his dreams."
She said that during the lockdown she has observed the plight of Dalits, poor people, marginalized etc adding that "it only proves that there has been no change of mentality/attitude by the Centre and the state governments towards them." The BSP chief said, "I am saying this today with sadness that since the lockdown was imposed by the Centre to tackle the coronavirus pandemic, the arrangements made by the State governments to manage the stranded workers was not up to the mark."
She added, "Almost 90% of them were Dalits, Adivasis and from other marginalized communities and the rest 10% of them were poor. The states in which they were stranded did not stop them from going back to their home states which is an example of their mentality towards them nor did they make efforts to provide them with their daily needs. They did not plan anything for their departure as well. They were forced to send them back in buses and trucks. Most of them are still not allowed to visit their homes and are isolated."
However, Mayawati said that her party will support if the Central government extends Coronavirus lockdown with some conditions while keeping in view public interests. "But the government must keep in mind the interests of the poor, labourers, farmers and other working-class and provide aid to them during the lockdown," she added.
A total number of 10,363 cases of novel Coronavirus have been reported in India. So far, 339 people have succumbed to the infection in the country, while 1,035 patients have been cured. There are 8,988 active cases in the country, according to the Ministry of Health and Family Welfare.
(With agency inputs)