BSP chief Mayawati on Monday asked Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath-led BJP government to shift her party’s state office to a “safe” place to prevent the occurrence of any untoward incident that “can happen there at any time”.
She also accused the former Samajwadi Party government of taking several anti-Dalit decisions, which included constructing an over bridge in front of the BSP office in Lucknow from where “conspiratorial anarchist elements” could harm the party office, staff and the national president.
Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav hit back, saying she could get it demolished by the BJP-led Union government with which she is “hand in glove”.
“The bridge was built following all rules after obtaining NOC from the Railways and Defence ministries,” said Mr Yadav, who had dedicated the bridge to the public in 2014 when he was the then chief minister of Uttar Pradesh.
When asked about the BSP chief’s request to shift her party office because of security concerns, the SP president retorted, “Who has stopped them, they are hand-in-glove with the BJP. If the BSP leadership feels that its security is in danger then it should write a letter to the Central government and get this bridge demolished.” “The BJP government has many bulldozers and can bring it down. I am prepared for it if the BJP listens to Mayawati ji, we have no complaints,” he said.
Mr Yadav further said former chief minister N D Tiwari used to take keen interest when it was being constructed and was also present at its inauguration. “Will they blame ND Tiwari also? Who all will be blamed,” he asked.
Meanwhile, Uttar Pradesh Deputy Chief Minister Keshav Prasad Maurya took a jibe at the Samajwadi Party following Mayawati’s request.
“BSP chief Ms Mayawati’s doubt on the SP regarding her security proves that the character of the SP has still not changed. The SP government had made a nefarious attempt to murder Behen Mayawati in the guest house incident. The government has always been alert regarding the safety of Mayawati and the public,” he said in a post on X.
The decision of the previous SP government had generated much heat as the BSP leaders had vehemently protested against its construction, alleging that it was a security threat to Mayawati.
The party had alleged that the over bridge posed a threat by exposing Mayawati’s bungalow at Mall Avenue as well as the BSP office in Lucknow.
Mayawati said that the BSP had to shift the statues of many personalities to her residence due to security problems, adding that given the insecurity, the party had to shift important meetings from the party office to her house.
The BSP chief said that this would also help the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government deal strictly with the anti-Dalit elements.
“The BSP makes a special request to the UP government to make arrangements at a safe place somewhere else instead of the current party state office otherwise any untoward incident can happen here at any time. Besides, the party also demands that the government should deal strictly with anti-Dalit elements,” she said in a series of tweets earlier in the day.
While requesting for her party office to be shifted, Mayawati recalled the unpleasant incident of 1995.
The guest house incident took place on June 2, 1995, when Mayawati had withdrawn support from the Mulayam Singh Yadav-led government.
The agitated Samajwadi Party workers had post this attacked Mayawati at the guest house in Lucknow and besides hurling abuses at her allegedly cut off the electricity and water supply of the premises.
BJP lawmaker Brahm Dutt Dwivedi had rescued her then.
Mayawati launched a vitriolic attack on the Samajwadi Party and accused it of not only being anti-most backward classes but also an “anti-Dalit party”.
The BSP chief said that her party tried to change the Samajwadi Party’s anti-Dalit “chal, charita and chehra” after an alliance with it in the last general elections, but Akhilesh Yadav-led party returned to its anti-Dalit and casteist agenda after the polls.
Mayawati said whenever the Samajwadi Party (SP) chief talks about an alliance, his first condition is maintaining distance with the BSP.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)