BJP filing false cases against dissenting voices from marginalised communities: Jignesh Mevani
The party does not want to implement any laws related to Adivasi rights, alleges the Independent MLA from Gujarat.
Gujarat MLA Jignesh Mevani on Tuesday alleged that the Bharatiya Janata Party is misusing its power by filing false charges against dissenting voices from marginalised communities, The Indian Express reported.
“If any youth from the Other Backward Class, Dalit or Adivasi community challenges the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh or the BJP, they book them under false cases like they did to me,” Mevani said at an event organised by Congress in Gujarat’s Dahod city.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi and party’s state unit Working President Hardik Patel also addressed the gathering. Though Mevani is an Independent MLA, he supports the Congress.
Mevani was arrested twice between April 20 and April 25 in the Bharatiya Janata Party-ruled Assam. In the first case, Mevani was charged with criminal conspiracy and outraging religious feelings for tweeting against Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Mevani had said that the prime minister worshipped freedom fighter Mohandas Karamchand Gandhi’s assassin Nathuram Godse.
In the second case, he was charged for allegedly assaulting a woman police officer and outraging her modesty. He has, however, been granted bail in both cases.
Last week, Mevani and nine other persons were sentenced to three months in jail by a Gujarat court for holding a rally in the Mehsana city in 2017 without police permission.
On Tuesday, Mevani said that the BJP will have to withdraw false cases filed against members of backward communities.
“The BJP does not want to implement any laws related to Adivasi rights,” alleged Mevani, according to The Indian Express. “They refuse to identify Adivasis by their actual identity and call them Vanbandhu and Vanvasi but the actual true identity of the tribals is that of Adivasis.”
Mevani also urged the Adivasi youth to reclaim their identity.
The BJP is planning to displace 50,000 families in the name of development and building dams, but the Congress will fight for the rights of the Adivasis, Mevani said.
He alleged that the BJP has recruited people in Gujarat’s Adivasi districts under Mahatma Gandhi National Rural Employment Guarantee Act through scams.
The scheme ensures 100 days of guaranteed wage employment of unskilled manual work to at least one adult member of every household in rural areas, in addition to 50 days in areas impacted by natural calamity.
Meanwhile, Patel urged the attendees to bring Congress back to power in Gujarat to bring about change. Gandhi accused the BJP-led Centre of creating a divisive model of the country.
“In the BJP model, which has created two Indias – one for the rich and one for the poor – resources of the country belonging to poor people are being given to a few rich people,” he said, PTI reported.
The saffron party will not give, but only take everything from the Adivasis, Gandhi said. “You [Adivasis] have to snatch your rights and then only you will get what is yours,” the Congress leader said, PTI reported.
“Adivasis through their hard work build roads, bridges, buildings and infrastructure in Gujarat,” he said. “But what did you get in return? You got nothing. Neither good education nor health service.”