Self-appointed guardians creating trouble for Dalits, says Modi


Condemning violence against dalits, Prime Minister Narendra Modi today asked politicians, including his own partymen, to shun irresponsible statements even as he said the community’s “self-appointed champions” were giving political colour to the social problem to create tensions.

He said he was committed to the welfare of dalits and other oppressed sections of the society but some people cannot digest that “Modi is pro-dalit”.

He condemned the incidents of violence against dalits, saying it does not suit any civilised society.

“I want to tell politicians, including the leaders of my own party, that there should be no irresponsible statements against any person or community. The country’s unity, social unity and equality should not be affected. We should be extra cautious,” Modi told CNN-News 18 in an interview.

Noting that there are many dalits who are BJP MPs and MLAs in the country, he said, “Ever since I celebrated 125th birth anniversary of B R Ambedkar…many people felt that Modi is Ambedkar’s follower. They started having problems.

“Those who consider themselves as “thekedar” (self- appointed champions) of some special section and want to create tension in the society, they could not digest this that Modi is pro-dalit…”

Insisting that “I am committed to the welfare of dalits, victims, oppressed, deprived, tribals and women”, the Prime Minister said, “Those facing trouble because of this are creating problems and levelling baseless charges again.

Speaking of the Uttar Pradesh election coming in the next few months, the Prime Minister said that voters had to choose between the BJP’s development agenda and the opposition’s caste and community led vote bank politics.

He said, “The poison of casteism and communal vote bank have caused enough damage in our country. The biggest obstacle to strengthening our democracy is the vote bank politics. There was no atmosphere of vote bank politics in last general elections, there was the atmosphere of development of politics.

“After 30 years people of section of our society unitedly voted for a majority government. An entire section of our society has made a shift. It’s possible that the people of UP will do a similar thing for betterment of UP, they will vote keeping development in their mind.”