Cong MLA to be booked under SC/ST Act: Mayawati

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Lucknow, Jan 18 (UNI) Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Mayawati today said Congress MLA Pankaj Mallik, who had allegedly assaulted a dalit District Development Officer (DDO) in Muzaffarnagar, would be booked under the SC/ST Act.

Directing senior officials to be extra careful that the Act was not misused to hamper social brotherhood created by the BSP in the state, she said atrocities against dalits would not be tolerated.

Addressing a press conference here, Ms Mayawati said the Congress had always harassed dalits and now her government would teach the party a lesson to mend its ways. ''I have asked the DGP and Principal Secretary (Home) to enforce the Act in such cases with utmost caution'', she said.

''These opposition parties are always trying to create confusion among the masses about the central SC/ST Act but my government will not compromise with any atrocities against dalits'', she added.

Hitting out hard at the Congress, she said this party, during its 60 years of rule, had ''crushed dalits'' to the ground which was still continuing in the states where it was in power.

Congress MLA Pankaj Mallik had allegedly assulted DDO Muzaffarnagar Brahma Swaroop during a meeting. The official had lodged a case against the MLA and police arrested eight people who were with the legislator at the time of the incident.

In his complaint, the DDO alleged that the MLA manhandled him and issued life threats, besides using derogatory language.

Ms Mayawati said opposition parties in UP always tried to create confusion that her government had either shelved the use of the Act or was not using it in a proper manner.

''It is my utmost duty to protect the honour of the dalits and other oppressed classes but on the other hand, it should not be misused, leading to breaking of the Sarva Samaj concept of the BSP'', she said.

UNI MB/SB PB MSJ BD1531

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