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Sunday, September 26, 2021
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What BJP cannot do in the Telugu states: Kancha Ilaiah Shepherd writes

People do not vote for the BJP because it promises to make a BC leader the Chief Minister.

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In both the Telugu states, the Bharatiya Janata Party is trying to expand its base among the Backward Classes. It is trying to admit and promote anyone who comes out of the ruling regional parties and trying to give an impression that they want to bring the backward leaders to power. This has been their aspiration in the united Andhra Pradesh and in the divided two states. The recent trapping of Eatela Rajender and admitting him into the Hindutva party is part of that strategy.

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The BJP adopted this strategy in West Bengal where a regional Trinamool Party headed by Mamata Banerjee, a Brahmin woman leader, is in power. It first promoted Dilip Ghosh, a Sadgop backward leader, as the party president. Sadgops are historically shepherds and cattle herders in Bengal who were treated as disrespectable people by Brahmins, Kayasthas and Vaidhyas. These three castes also are known as Bhadralok with common cultural status. These three castes are highly English educated by starving the Shudras and Namashudras (Dalits) of that language. They did not even implement

What BJP cannot do in the Telugu states: Kancha Ilaiah Shepherd writes

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People do not vote for the BJP because it promises to make a BC leader the Chief Minister.

PM Narendra Modi and HM Amit Shah seated next to each other at an event Modi is leaning in to speak to Shah as Shah looks straight aheadCOURTESY: PTI
VOICES OPINION MONDAY, JUNE 21, 2021 – 14:15
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In both the Telugu states, the Bharatiya Janata Party is trying to expand its base among the Backward Classes. It is trying to admit and promote anyone who comes out of the ruling regional parties and trying to give an impression that they want to bring the backward leaders to power. This has been their aspiration in the united Andhra Pradesh and in the divided two states. The recent trapping of Eatela Rajender and admitting him into the Hindutva party is part of that strategy.

 

The BJP adopted this strategy in West Bengal where a regional Trinamool Party headed by Mamata Banerjee, a Brahmin woman leader, is in power. It first promoted Dilip Ghosh, a Sadgop backward leader, as the party president. Sadgops are historically shepherds and cattle herders in Bengal who were treated as disrespectable people by Brahmins, Kayasthas and Vaidhyas. These three castes also are known as Bhadralok with common cultural status. These three castes are highly English educated by starving the Shudras and Namashudras (Dalits) of that language. They did not even implement reservation in that state keeping the productive castes completely marginalised. This was the worst casteist legacy that the left Bhadralok leaders handed over to the masses.

Ever since independence in 1947, only Brahmins and Kayasthas have ruled that state. Modi and Amit Shah thought that the BJP can come to power only with Shudra and Dalit votes as they do not get Muslim and English educated Bhadralok votes in that state. In the 2021 elections, the BJP purely organised on caste lines and became an opposition party.

In north India — particularly in Uttar Pradesh and Haryana where the backward class leaders were in power — they brought in leaders like Adityanath, a Ksatriya; Monohar Khattar, a Khatri; to power. They are trying to work caste-based calculations more carefully than the Congress at the national level and at the regional level.

But in the south, there is a different situation. The Brahmin, English-educated leaders went out of power a long time back. Mostly Shudra regional leaders are in power as they weakened the Congress step by step. The implementation of reservations in the south Indian state universities and government services are done according to the rule book. Tamil Nadu took the lead in the reservation ideology and implementation process.

Even in the north Indian states like Gujarat and Madhya Pradesh, where the BJP was in power for a long time, the pro-poor welfare schemes were minimal. In these states, the education system is very backward and English medium education is weakest. They are in fact opposed to English medium education as part of their ‘Hindu, Hindi and Hindustan’ ideology. They only allow private sector English medium schools and colleges if they are run by monopoly companies that support them financially.

In Telangana and Andhra Pradesh, even if the BJP makes BC leaders Chief Ministers, the problem is that their welfare agenda is not in the hands of the state units of that party. The welfare economy of Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Tamil Nadu and Kerala is several fold higher than any BJP-ruled state in the country. Take for example the old age pension. In AP and Telangana, people get Rs 2000 per month for those who are above 60 years. This scheme is not there in BJP-ruled states. No BJP-ruled state has residential schools for SCs, STs and OBCs. The SC/ST/BC budget is not comparable to any south Indian state where the regional parties are in power versus the north Indian states where the BJP is in power.

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