(PTI Photo by Nand Kumar)
(PTI Photo by Nand Kumar)

Lucknow: Unfazed by media speculation about the emergence of a political heir in the BSP, Mayawati hit back at the critics and announced the induction of her nephew Akash Anand, an MBA graduate, into the party. Accusing some of the media houses of being casteist and anti-Dalit, BSP chief Mayawati on Thursday broke her silence saying that she was appointing her nephew Akash Anand in the party to make him learn about the party.

Media speculation started after Akash, son of Mayawati’s younger brother, Anand Kumar, was seen prominently receiving visitors at her residence on Tuesday when she celebrated her 63rd birthday and on the day she announced a political alliance with the Samajwadi Party for the Lok Sabha elections on Saturday. Questions were raised whether he was the heir apparent for Mayawati, a spinster. Mayawati addressed a press conference on Thursday and attacked her political rivals and the media accusing them of being “casteist and anti-Dalit”.

“Rise in the popularity of BSP and its alliance with SP is giving sleepless nights among parties and leaders who are anti-Dalit and casteist. Instead of fighting us in a fair manner they are making absurd remarks against us and conspiring with some casteist and anti-Dalit media houses.”

“As my nephew Akash Anand was targeted by political rivals after he was seen with me in Lucknow on my birthday, the casteist and anti-Dalit minds in the political area are indulging in cheap politics,” she said announcing the induction of Akash, a MBA from London, into the party. Mayawati said that she was a disciple of Kanshi Ramji and “all of you have seen how he had given a tit-for-tat answer in the earlier days”.

“And thus being a disciple of Kanshi Ramji, to give a ‘tit for tat’ answer, I will make Akash (Anand) join BSP movement and make him learn. If some casteist and anti-Dalit sections of media have a problem with that so be it. Our party does not care about it,” she said. Recalling the role of her brother, Anand Kumar, in the BSP movement, Mayawati said that he had worked a lot for the party.

“And after discussion with the party leaders, I had made him the party’s Vice President. But he himself offered to step down from the post to ensure that there were no accusations of dynastic politics in the party,” Maywati said, adding that he had never asked for any designation in the party.

And after stepping down from the party’s post my brother and his family worked more for the party, she said. She also recalled that Kumar and his family have been struggling since 2003 to support her. “He has been selflessly supporting the party,” Mayawati added.

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