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Bhim Army Calls for Tribal Chief Minister at Mega Bhopal Rally

Chandrashekhar Azad Ravan announces at a massive gathering of Dalits, tribals, OBCs and minorities to field candidates in this year’s Assembly election.
Bhim Army Calls for Tribal Chief Minister at Mega Bhopal Rally

Bhopal: Bhim Army chief Chandrashekhar Azad Ravan would field candidates under the collective banner of Dalit, tribal, OBC and minority community outfits in this year’s Madhya Pradesh (MP) Assembly election.

Announcing the decision at a joint mega rally of Dalit, tribal and OBC outfits in Bhopal on Sunday, Azad Samaj Party’s national president and Bhim Army co-founder Ravan said that contesting such seats would pave the way to install a tribal chief minister (CM).

The Samajik Naya Yatra was organised by the Bhim Army to oppose a rally held by a section of the Karni Sena in the state capital last month to demand amendment in reservation and the Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe (Prevention of Atrocities) Act, 1989.

Jai Adivasi Yuva Shakti (JAYS) leader Anand Rai, Ravan, expelled BJP leader Preetam Singh Lodhi and OBC Mahasabha leaders shared the stage at Bhopal’s BHEL Dussehra Maidan and raised 31 demands, including a pan-India caste census like the one under way in Bihar.

They also demanded a law to ensure reservation in promotions in state government jobs, raise the compensation awarded to SC/ST victims of atrocities from Rs 8.25 lakh to Rs 30 lakh, increase MNREGA’s minimum wage from Rs 190 to Rs 700 and withdrawal of cases lodged against members of weaker sections.

MP has the highest tribal population. But it’s yet to have a tribal CM,” Ravan said adding that a “united front comprising 85% of weaker sections and minorities is now in place to contest polls”. He also announced taking out multiple Nyay Yatras across the state to mobilise public support for the demands.

“Be it the Congress or the BJP, they have stripped us of our rights. You elected the Congress (Kamal Nath government in 2018) but it fell (in 2020). We will now rely on our own collective power and strength,” he told PTI.

Slamming the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Congress, Azad said these parties appointed tribal governors and presidents who have a negligible role, but not CMs.

Slamming Mayawati-led BSP, whose strength shrunk to two seats in 2018 in the Assembly with one of the MLAs joining the ruling BJP later, Ravan said, “Those who are unable to save their MLAs, how can we expect them to protect the Bahujan Samaj?”

When the election around eight months away, the Bhim Army has been gaining ground in the Gwalior-Chambal region, Ujjain and parts of Bundelkhand. The JAYS hold its command among marginalised voters of Nimar and Mandla regions. The OBC Mahasabha, meanwhile, is working to increase its foothold in Bundelkhand and the Gwalior-Chambal region.


Vyapam scam whistle-blower Rai said that the Yatra was “an attempt to give a befitting reply to the Karni Sena and other organisations seeking to amend reservation and the Act”.

Claiming that more than three to four lakh people participated in the rally with no participant above 45 years, Rai said, “This is the first time when the leaders of marginalised and OBC communities shared the stage. The rally is a wake-up call for the ruling party and the Congress.”  

Targeting the Congress, another JAYS leader Lokesh Mujalda said, “When the Karni Sena was protesting in Bhopal, leaders from the ruling and the Opposition, including Kamal Nath, showed concern about their demands. When tribals, Dalits and OBCs are protesting, no Congress leader supported us.” 


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