Homing in on a significant role in the next government at the Centre, Samajwadi Party (SP) chief Akhilesh Yadav on Sunday made a strong pitch for a caste census in the country and said the socialists will help in conducting it after the 2024 Lok Sabha elections.
Yadav was addressing a rally in Haryana’s Jind town which was organised by Independent legislator Balraj Kundu, who has formed a new political outfit Haryana Jansewak Party. Kundu represents Meham in the Haryana assembly.
Yadav said, “A voice which was once raised from UP (for a caste census), is now also being raised in Bihar. The whole country today wants caste census because even after so many years of Independence, the counting of the backwards has not taken place. We (the country) have not been able to bring them (backwards) into the mainstream. We know the people of Haryana also want it (caste census). After the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections, the socialists will help in getting caste census done in the country so that people of these castes get their rights and honour.”
The development comes ahead of the next year assembly polls in Haryana, where the BJP-JJP coalition is in power.
The SP leader also promised to restore the previous system of recruitment for the “fauj” (Army) while ending the BJP-introduced Agniveer system “whenever socialists get a chance to come to power”. “It will be the first thing in the poll manifesto for 2024 elections,” the SP leader said.
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Yadav also congratulated the farmers mainly from Haryana and Punjab for a successful agitation against the now-repealed three central farm laws while dubbing them “black laws”.
Assuring all help to Kundu, the SP leader said, “We socialists are with you. Our (SP) flag is red and green and your flag is also red and green. One day Kundu will form government in Haryana.” The Congress has also been demanding a caste census and has promised to get the survey done if voted to power at the Centre.
The Nitish Kumar-led JD(U) government in Bihar has already released findings of its caste survey, months ahead of the 2024 parliamentary elections. On the occasion, former Gujarat chief minister Shankersinh Vaghela, among other leaders were also present.
(With PTI inputs)