Training her guns once again at the BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) chief Mayawati said ‘Stand Up India’ scheme was an eyewash with no serious purpose other than to corner Dalit votes in the next Uttar Pradesh assembly polls.
Before attempting to socially empower the Dalits, Prime Minister Modi should try and fill the reserved quotas for these communities in government jobs, Mayawati said in a statement.
“All that is happening smacks of political agenda as there is no serious will to improve the lot of the Dalits and the downtrodden,” the former Uttar Pradesh chief minister said.
Responding to her criticism, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) spokesman Vijay Bahadur Pathak said the Dalit leader had lost her sense of balance.
Mayawati was rattled by the prospect that the prime minister’s schemes could actually empower Dalits financially and help them earn livelihoods as opposed to mere promises that she gave them, he said.
“The Stand Up India scheme is a lovely example of what we mean by ‘Sabka Saath, Sabka Vikaas’ (taking everyone along in progress),” Pathak said.
“One has to understand that this has created a complex in leaders and parties that have used Dalits as a means to get power rather than working for their welfare,” the BJP spokesperson said.
Prime Minister Modi launched the Stand up India scheme on Tuesday as part of the government’s efforts to support entrepreneurship among women and Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe communities.
The scheme looks to extend bank loans ranging from Rs 10 lakh to Rs 1 crore to Dalits and women borrowers at cheaper rates.
Modi had said Stand up India aims to empower every Indian and enable them to stand on their own feet. Today’s job seekers will be tomorrow’s job creators, he said.