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Mayawati woos Muslims, other groups

Saturday December 17, 2011 06:49:38 PM, IANS

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Lucknow: After Brahmins and Dalits, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) president Mayawati is all set to woo Muslims, Kshatriyas and Vaishyas at a mega rally here Sunday, party leaders said.

According to party sources, "members of the three communities will converge at the Ramabai Ambedkar grounds in unprecedented numbers".

"We have been working for this rally for quite sometime and we are confident that the call given by us will draw lakhs of party supporters belonging to these communities," said a party spokesman closely supervising the arrangements for the event.

Heavy police deployment has been planned from Saturday evening as batches of BSP supporters from different corners of the state have started arriving. According to Lucknow's Director General of Police D.K. Thakur, "nearly 10,000 policemen will be on duty to regulate the crowds".

What Mayawati has in store for them remains a mystery, but speculation is that she is likely to make some political announcement Sunday.

Preparations for the rally have been afoot for almost a month and with the final touches now being given, a large part of the state capital is literally painted in BSP's blue.

The nearly 12 km-long route from the chief minister's residence to the venue is flanked by huge blue hoardings, bearing Mayawati's portrait with tiny insets of other leaders like Kanshi Ram, Babasaheb Ambedkar, Jyotiba Phule and Narain Guru.

Each of these countless hoardings bears a standard format with the only difference in the footnote - that carries the name of the sponsor who is invariably a ruling party minister or a party functionary. For a change, some of them have been allowed to print their own pictures on the hoardings - something otherwise banned in the highly regimented party.

Evidently, the sponsors have spared no efforts in driving home the message of the rally to the targeted communities. Even the names of the communities are written in the colours usually representing them. Thus, while "Muslims" is painted in green, "kshatriyas" is in red and "vaishyas" in yellow.

The rally comes close on the heels of last month's Dalit-Brahmin 'bhai-chara' sammelan that drew tremendous crowds.






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