The Bahujan Mukti Party (BMP) has been founded to protect the interests of Dalit-bahujans and is in the thick of the preparations for the upcoming Lok Sabha elections. BMP believes that all political parties are busy strengthening Brahmanism while it alone aims at uprooting the existing system. It does not spare even the so-called Dalit-bahujan parties like SP and BSP. It is also against the use of the word ‘Dalit’ and describes it as unconstitutional. Amarendra Yadav, Principal Correspondent of FP, talked to BMP President VL Matang on these and other issues. Excerpts:
What was the need for floating the Bahujan Mukti Party?
Democracy has virtually been extinguished in the country thanks to the two-party system, dominated by the UPA and NDA combines. One of them is in the opposition and the other in the government. But the problem is that the policies and programmes of both are the same. They hold the same views on issues such privatization, SEZs, OBCs, creamy layer, caste census, universalization of education, clearing backlog of reservations, unemployment, malnutrition and FDI. The regional parties are playing second fiddle to them. This means that the basic character of all the parties is the same: they all are strengthening Brahamnism. No party is doing anything to wipe out the Brahmanical system. It is to uproot the present system that the BMP has come into existence.
The BMP is an offshoot of BAMCEF, which is basically a social organization. It has been insisting that it would never join the political arena. Against this backdrop, won’t this decision hurt the sentiments of the workers and supporters of BAMCEF?
Bahujan Mukti Party is inspired by the objectives and ideology of BAMCEF. It has not been founded by BAMCEF, which is an organization of government employees. None of its members can form a political party or join one. If the BMP is planning to raise the same issues that the BAMCEF has been raising from time to time, there is no cause for its workers to feel offended.
Many political parties in India fight elections in the name of Tribals, Dalits and OBCs. How are you different from them?
BMP does not believe in the concept of Dalits because Dr Babasaheb Ambedkar never recognized this word. If he had, it would have found a place in the Constitution. The political parties just mislead the Dalits and the OBCs and get their votes. BMP will be a true representative of SCs, STs, OBCs and minorities. The BMC aims at annihilating Brahmanism. not strengthening it.
Contesting elections is an expensive affair. From where will the money come?
You are right. In the present scenario, fighting elections has become a costly exercise. Moreover, the parties which we will have to take on have tonnes of black money. We cannot compete with them on this plane. But it is also true that while they have money, they don’t have popular support. That is why they have to purchase votes. We will contest on the basis of our organizational strength. The issues which we will raise, no other party will be able to raise. Still, some money will be needed. We will arrange it. For this, we plan to enrol at least one lakh members in each Lok Sabha constituency. Our fund collection drive will be strictly in accordance with the law.
How are you preparing for the polls?
Our preparations began six months ago. On 15 January, we announced the names of our 219 candidates in 15 states. The rest of the candidates will be announced soon. Our workers are enthusiastically preparing for the elections in a well-organized way.
What is the support base of the BMP? Do you consider yourselves as an alternative for the Dalit-bahujans?
The support base of BMP is SCs, STs, Notified Tribes, De-notified Tribes, Nomadic Tribes, MBCs, OBCs, minorities and women. They together constitute 85 per cent of the country’s population. They are the Bahujans in the real sense of the word. Other parties like BSP and SP also consider themselves representatives of Dalits-bahujans. But they are nothing except A and B teams of the Congress.
It is the BSP which talks the most about Bahujans. Will you not be eating into the BSP vote bank?
Once upon a time, the BSP did talk of Bahujans. But now it talks of Sarvajan. It is eating into its own vote bank. For instance, there was a time when it was the recognized opposition in Punjab. It was quite strong in MP too. But its vote share fell drastically in the recent elections to the legislative assemblies of four states. We were not in the field but still it suffered reverses. You just wait and see; because of its anti-Bahujan policies, the vote bank of the BSP will shrink further in the days to come.
The party’s manifesto talks of fundamental changes in the electoral system of the country. What changes do you want?
We want representative democracy. That is, every social group or community should get representation in proportion to its population. No class or community should have a monopoly. Also, though there is a cap on campaign expenses of individual candidates the parties can spend as much money they want. A similar cap should be imposed on parties too. It is because of this loophole that the Congress has signed a contract with a company for Rs 500 crore and BJP with Epco Worldwide for Rs 100 crore. Each rally of Rahul Gandhi and Narendra Modi costs crores. This must end.
Published in the March 2014 issue of the Forward Press magazine
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