Ruling NDA constituent Apna Dal (S) today claimed there was an “exodus” of people from the BSP since the Mayawati-led party was neglecting Dalits and backwards in Uttar Pradesh. “There has virtually been an exodus from the BSP to Apna Dal (S) since the focus of BSP supremo is on strengthening her financial status at the cost of Dalits and backwards,” Apna Dal spokesperson Arvind Sharma said here. Stressing that Apna Dal was working towards the uplift of the deprived communities, Sharma said efforts were on to ensure constitutional status for the “Backward Class Commission”. “The bill giving constitutional status to ‘Backward class commission’ has been tabled in Parliament,” he said. The focus of Anu Priya Patel, the national convenor of Apna Das (S), is on the interest of Dalits, backwards and ‘Kamera’ community, he claimed. Apna Dal was floated by Sone Lal Patel, Anupriya’s father in 1995. A former associate of BSP founder Kanshi Ram, Patel fell out with Mayawati and formed his own party, which claims a strong political support from the Kurmi backward caste in UP. Speaking to reporters here, Sharma also clarified the position of the Apna Dal (S) on Central government’s ban on sale of cattle for slaughter. “While there is no ban on individual sale of cattle, only illegal slaughter houses have been closed since they were posing threat to health of common man,” he claimed.
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“Uplift of villages through dairying, cottage industries, Kaushal Vikas Mission etc is our priority with stress on eliminating middlemen from every field,” he said, adding, “E-tendering is a step in this direction.” On law and order situation in the state, he said the the governments prior to the BJP-led dispensation had “polluted” the environment by “promoting casteism”. “The officers also did not take things seriously while the change in the posting of second and third tier of police officials is a must for good governance,” Sharma said, adding, “Total overhauling would now begin since we believe in zero tolerance of crime.” He added that there has been a big jolt to illegal mining in UP since Yogi Adityanath assumed charge as chief minister.