BJP to campaign against TMC over its leader's 'insult' of scheduled castes

New Delhi, Apr 12 (PTI) The BJP will launch major protests in West Bengal against the alleged disparaging comments of a TMC leader about scheduled castes, as the saffron party looks to step up its campaign in the remaining phases of the state assembly polls.

A delegation of BJP's Dalit MPs, including party general secretary Dushyant Kumar Gautam, Sunita Duggal and Hansraj Hans besides its SC wing head Lal Singh Arya, submitted a memorandum to the National Commission for Scheduled Castes, seeking action against TMC leader Sujata Mondal Khan.

Alleging that Khan's remarks are against the constitutional values, the BJP urged the commission to request the Election Commission to derecognise the regional party. Khan had recently allegedly likened the scheduled castes in West Bengal to beggars for the community's support to the BJP in large numbers.

Dubbing the TMC as 'anti-Dalits', Gautam said the BJP will launch major protests against the state's ruling party.

'What she (Khan) has said is deeply insulting. She said the scheduled castes are beggars by nature. The community is supporting the BJP due to our welfare policies. What she has said is reflective of the TMC's and Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's mindset,' Gautam told reporters.

West Bengal does not even have an SC commission where Dalits can go for lodging their complaints, Gautam said, targeting Banerjee.

The Modi government has worked for all sections of society without any discrimination, and that is what the BJP is receiving support for every community, he said.

The party has demanded action against Khan.

A party delegation had on Sunday lodged a similar complaint with the Election Commission.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi has also raised the issue in his poll speeches in the state.

In its submission to the SC Commission, the BJP alleged that Khan's 'deeply shocking and insulting statements' are a blow to the socialist, secular and democratic republic envisaged by B R Ambedkar. 'It is utterly shameful and disgraceful that such statements are being openly and brazenly made by the ruling leadership of the Trinamool Congress to create enmity and hatred between different social classes in West Bengal,' the BJP said. 'The commission may also be pleased to request the Election Commission of India to order withdrawal of recognition of the All India Trinamool Congress as a political party for failing to uphold its own aims and objectives as per AITC's constitution,' it said. The BJP has been running a concerted campaign in its bid to end the TMC's 10-year rule in the state. Assembly polls in West Bengal are being held in eight phases between March 27 and April 29. PTI KR SMN SMN