Bharipa Bahujan Mahasangh (BBM) Chief Prakash Ambedkar wants a written assurance from the Congress to bring the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh in the ambit of the Indian Constitution. He further insisted that unless the Congress and the Nationalist Congress Party (NCP) together give a proposal for the action against the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), he would not favour the alliance. He demanded 12 seats to contest in this alliance and also clarified that he is not in favour of banning the organisation and wants it to be registered either as a social or a political organisation and follow the Indian Constitution. NCP leader Chitra Wagh asserted, “Not necessarily Prakash Ambedkar has the entire Dalit vote bank. Ambedkar should make an alliance with Congress and NCP and counter the Hindutva forces. The communal crisis has taken over the entire nation and we expect Ambedkar to take a stand for the benefit of Maharashtra.”
The Congress and NCP had held frequent meetings with BBM, urging Ambedkar to join the alliance in their fight against the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Alliance with Ambedkar, the grandson of Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar, has emotional value among the Dalit voters. He enjoys following in parts of Vidarbha, including Akola. Ambedkar refuted the claims that his decision of not contesting with the Congress and NCP will be of advantage to the ruling BJP. Ambedkar has already formed Vanchit Bahujan Aghadi (VBA), an alliance of small parties, including Asaduddin Owaisi-led All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (AIMIM), for the Lok Sabha elections.
Senior Congress leader and former MP Eknath Gaikwad asserted, “The demands of Prakash Ambedkar are being taken into consideration. All anti-RSS political parties must come together to meet Ambedkar’s demand to bring RSS in the constitutional ambit while he should also be adaptive towards Congress’ demands. We want Prakash Ambedkar and Congress to make an alliance to make his demand a reality.”
He added, “To counter Fascism, Congress has already launched the ‘Save the Constitution’ movement and if Ambedkar joins us, it would add great value.”
In a move to attract the dominant castes, Ambedkar said that his party would give Lok Sabha tickets to Mali, Dhangar, Koli, Bhandari, and Agari communities since he believes that they are capable of developing their lands. They will be given tickets in Mumbai, Thane, Kalyan, Bhiwandi, Raigad, Maval, Ratnagiri, and Sindhudurg. However, it is believed by the political analysts that if the alliance fails to take place between the BBM and the Congress-NCP, the saffron party would take advantage of it.
Bharipa Bahujan Mahasangh Chief Prakash Ambedkar spoke to Afternoon Voice and expressed, “Congress should draw a plan and bring the RSS within the folds of the Constitution. While Congress has ruled for 50 years, they have failed to do so. Today, RSS is acting as a parallel administration in this country; Congress should be absolutely sure that they are against the RSS and then only they can bring the RSS under the ambit of the Constitution. We are a small and poor party and we are foot soldiers; we are declaring the name of the candidates and we can’t wait for long. Our party will contest all the 48 seats if there is no alliance with Congress-NCP.”
In the meanwhile, during a rally in Kolhapur on Tuesday, the Dalit leader announced the names of candidates for five Lok Sabha constituencies — Pune, Baramati, Madha, Satara, and Sangli — in western Maharashtra and he also resolved to contest all 10 seats in the region that is considered as NCP stronghold. While Vitthal Satav, who belongs to the Mali community, will contest from Pune, Sahdev Ahiwale will fight from Satara, Navnath Padalkar and Vijay More, the candidates from the Dhangar community will fight from Baramati and Madha seats respectively. However, he is expected to make the names of the candidates for Hatkangle and Kolhapur public soon and there’s a possibility that the party will field a Muslim candidate in Hatkangle.
BJP MLA Sardar Tara Singh said, “It is worthless to talk on the demands to get RSS in the constitutional ambit; it is a separate organisation and it knows the Indian Constitution. The BJP is a brainchild of RSS, so are many other parties. Thus, people need not teach the RSS about the Constitution of India.”
A few days back, the BBM leader also raised the issue of 200 Gaonthan in south Mumbai, which has occupied 2000 acres. Pointing at the nexus between Shiv Sena and builders, he attacked the state government saying that it is planning to give this land to the builders under the Slum Rehabilitation Authority (SRA) for redevelopment and assured his fight against the builder lobby.
AIMIM MLA Waris Pathan speaks out about the BBM Chief’s demand and stated, “AIMIM will support Prakash Ambedkar even if Congress wants to join hands with his party. We live in a democratic country. Lawlessness can’t prevail in the country and every organisation must become a part of the Constitution. Nobody has the right to take law in their own hands.”