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Friday, 11 December 2020

For 2022 Assembly poll, BJP mulls projecting a Dalit as CM candidate

Rajmeet Singh

Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, December 10

Amid the standoff between the BJP-led NDA government and farmers at the Delhi borders over the farm laws, BJP leaders have stirred a debate on a Hindu or Dalit face as the Chief Minister of Punjab in the 2022 Assembly poll.

The caste and religion card has been played at a time when the state's peasantry is angry at the BJP for not repealing the farm laws. Punjab's peasantry joined by fellow farmers from Haryana and other states are staying put at the Delhi borders with a clear demand for getting the laws repealed.

In Punjab's poll arena, the Hindu population with over 40 per cent vote share and Dalits with 33 per cent vote share hold sway over the poll results.

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Harish Rawat, Punjab affairs in charge, Congress

Plan won't succeed, says Rawat

We are ready to counter the divisive political move of the BJP. As the Narendra Modi-led BJP government has hit at the heart of Punjabiyat, it will not succeed.

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After parting ways with SAD, the BJP is readying to throw its hat in the political arena in Punjab and is eyeing the BSP vote bank to strengthen its base in the state. Political analysts say the BJP could use multiple party strategy to neutralise the main political parties in the rural hinterland. It could also throw the bait to Dalit leaders, pointing out that Jats with 19 per vote share have been dominating the political arena, pushing aside the Dalits and other backward class leaders. The same card could be used for polarisation of the Hindu vote bank, they opined.

AICC general secretary Harish Rawat said the BJP's trick would not work in Punjab. Dalit BJP leader Vijay Sampla said the BJP had always been pro-Dalit. "It is the Congress that has deceived the Dalits, be it giving political representation or fraud in distribution of funds under the post-matric SC scholarship scheme." Dalit leader from Doaba Dr Ram Lal Jassi said the farmers' agitation had created a political vacuum that the BJP would try to fill by playing the caste and religion card. PPCC chief Sunil Jakhar said the saffron party was trying to polarise voters. "Right-minded people can see through the evil designs of the BJP and its intent to disturb the peace. The 'kisan andolan' has brought people on a common platformhellip;above caste, creed and colour," said Jakhar.



from The Tribune https://ift.tt/33ZhzZ2

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