SP, Congress hitch on to Brahmin bandwagon in UP

After the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), more and more political parties are taking to what is now being termed as the ‘Parshuram Path’ in Uttar Pradesh to woo Brahmins.

The Samajwadi Party and the Congress have also hitched on to the brahmin bandwagon, making the upper caste community a much sought after vote bank.

Samajwadi Party president Akhilesh Yadav held a meeting with five senior Brahmin leaders of his party — former UP assembly Speaker Mata Prasad Pandey, Manoj Pandey, Abhishek Mishra, Sanatan Pandey and Pawan Pandey.

During the three-hour long meeting, it was decided that the party will hold ‘Prabuddh Varg Sammelans’ from next month to establish a contact with the brahmin community.

The first sammelan will be held in Siddharth Nagar on August 22, Ballia on August 24 followed by similar events in Mau and Aurraiya on August 25 and 26.

Akhilesh Yadav also formed a core committee of the five leaders to plan the Brahmin outreach, issues and strategy.

SP’s effort to woo Brahmins comes at a time when the BSP is also holding Prabuddh Varg Sammelans to win over Brahmins.

However, SP president has specifically asked his leaders not to go overboard or play the Hindutva card which may jeopardize the party’s Muslim outreach. Muslims form the core base vote of the Samajwadi Party in UP.

Sources said the party will list issues faced by the Brahmin community at the district level and prepare a white paper on how the community has been at the receiving end of administrative high-handedness under BJP government.

SP is also installing statues of Lord Parshuram, the sixth Avatar of Lord Vishnu and a Brahmin ideologue, in every district.

Manoj Pandey, state president of Samajwadi Prabuddh Samaj and the party’s pointsman behind the Brahmin Sammelans, said, “We announced installing of idols of Lord Parshuram in every district about a year ago. We have identified land for the purpose in almost 50 districts and idols have already been installed in 8 districts, including Jalaun, Aurraiya and Balrampur.”

Abhishek Mishra, a former SP minister, meanwhile, dismissed the speculations that SP is organising Brahmin Sammelans taking a cue from BSP.

“The party had announced much earlier that it will install a 108-feet idol of Lord Parshuram in Lucknow. The idol is being made in Jaipur and will be installed in Lucknow soon. The SP government had also announced a holiday on Parshuram Jayanti which was later withdrawn by the Yogi Adityanath government,” Mishra said.

Reports are that the installation of the idol in Lucknow will be a huge event.

The party will also highlight the fact that it gave tickets to 42 Brahmins in the 2012 UP assembly elections and 23 of them won.

Meanwhile, former Congress MP Pramod Tiwari, for the first time, raised the issue of victimization of the Bikru minor widow Khushi Dubey who has been languishing in jail for the past one year.

He said, “It is the anti-Brahmin mentality of the Yogi Adityanath government that is responsible for the victimization of Khushi who had been married for just three days when she was picked up by the police.”

The Aam Aadmi Party has already been campaigning for Khushi’s freedom since the past several months.