Mumbai: Absence of Dalit & Muslim Parties Raise Questions Over Effectiveness Of INDIA Bloc Meet

Mumbai: Absence of Dalit & Muslim Parties Raise Questions Over Effectiveness Of INDIA Bloc Meet

Though, leaders have said that decision regarding adding more parties to the alliance will soon be taken, their absence has put a question mark on effectiveness of the alliance at least as of now.

Abhijit MulyeUpdated: Friday, September 01, 2023, 07:37 AM IST
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Though Dalit and Muslims formed major part of the traditional voter base of the Congress, the political parties representing theae sections of the society are not seen in the opposition alliance.

Though, leaders have said that decision regarding adding more parties to the alliance will soon be taken, their absence has put a question mark on effectiveness of the alliance at least as of now.

Significance of Key States

Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra are the top two states of the country that send maximum members to the Lok Sabha. Both the states have also played important role in shaping India’s Dalit politics. While Maharashtra is reverred as the home state of Dalit icon Dr B R Ambedkar, Uttar Pradesh is a state where a prominent Dalit party like BSP has its leader Mayavati as the Chief Minister four times in the past.

Maharashtra had also been a land of inspiration and experimentation for Kanshiram who formed the BSP. However, the party is not part of the INDIA alliance. In fact, by announcing that the BSP would contest all the Lok Sabha seats in Uttar Pradesh independently, Mayavati has almost put an end to any possibility of her being part of the INDIA alliance.

Sharad Pawar Reacts

NCP supremo and one of the prominent leaders of the INDIA alliance, Sharad Pawar reacted sharply to the development. “Many of her decisions have helped the BJP in past,” he said. However, the issue will be discussed in the meet, he added.

In Maharashtra, Adv Prakash Ambedkar, who formed a formidable force in the state in form of Vanchit bahujan Aghadi (VBA) in 2019, is not part of the INDIA alliance as yet even though he is with the Shiv Sena (UBT).

He had been a bitter critique of the Congress as well as the NCP. Whe asked about possibility of him joining the INDIA alliance, he said that he is open to the idea provided he received a proper invitation from the Congress. The state Congress doesn’t seem to be in a mood to do anything of that sort, at least as of now.

Missing Muslim Parties in Alliance

Muslims too form a major part of the traditional voter base of the Congress. However, there is no political party that represents Muslims in the INDIA alliance as of now.

In fact, AIMIM leader Asaduddin Owisi has been talking about forming a ‘third front’, which may derail the INDIA alliance’s electoral calculations. On the other hand no decision has been taken about AIUDF leader Badruddin Ajmal’s proposal seeking to join the INDIA alliance.

When asked about it, Pawar said, “INDIA is a huge alliance and hence decisions would take some time. The issue will be discussed in the meet and a decision will be taken.”

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