Mayawati elected BSP chief for 2nd term
Lucknow, Aug 27: Bahujan Samaj Party(BSP) supremo Mayawati was today elected national president of the party unopposed for the second consecutive term even as she disclosed that her political successor would be announced in the due course.
Addressing the party workers after being elected to the post, Ms Mayawati said that she was made the political successor of Mr Kanshi Ram when she was very young and now she would do the same in coming days.
However, the BSP president made it clear that neither the successor would not be from her family nor of any other castes except from the Schedule Castes, and be 30 to 35 years younger.
''I want a young person to be my political successor so that leader can get enough political training to fight for the party ideology just like I am performing my duty,'' she further claimed.
She said a name would be announced at the opportun time, the former UP Chief minister assured that the successor would not be from her family.
Reiterating her committment to continue the ''self-respect movement'' launched by the party founder Kanshi Ram, she urged the party workers to support her. ''I want all your support by 'Tan-Man-Dhan,'' she said.
Ms Mayawati was declared elected to the post of the party president for the second term for next 3 years by Returning Officer Ambat Rajan.
Ms Mayawati was the only candidate for the post and was proposed by the presidents and vice-presidents of the party's units in all 20 states, Mr Ambat announced.
Over 970 party delegates had also supported her name for the post.
The party president's election was be held a month in advance as the state is going to polls early next year .
Ms Mayawati had suceeded Mr Kanshi Ram as the party president in September 2003.
The raking up of the successor issue just before the crucial assembly polls in Uttar Pradesh by BSP president Mayawati has sent a political signal on her committment for the Dalits, backbone of her political support. The announcement by the BSP president clearly indicates the party's committment towards the Dalits and it was a political counter to the misconception about upper class community particularly the Brahmins taking the lead in the party.
A BSP leader claimed '' how can the party leave its basic political vote-bank through which it came to power thrice in UP and had become a major political force in north India''.
Another BSP leader, who also attended today's meeting, said that it was a well calcuated political move by the BSP president to counter the opponents who were trying to create confusion among the Dalits that Ms Mayawati was now only interested in the upper caste votes to regain power in the state for the fourth time.
Ms Mayawati during her address also said that she would prefer to have her political successor young, at least 30-35 years younger than her, so that the leader can be trained accordingly like she was done by BSP founder and her mentor Kashi Ram.
Political observers feel that Ms Mayawati through her political successor issue has tried to balance the political equation between the Dalits and upper caste vote-bank, which was till recent tilting on the side of upper caste.