Presidential election is being dubbed as 'Dalit Vs Dalit': Meira Kumar

Presidential election is being dubbed as


Presidential election is being dubbed as 'Dalit Vs Dalit': Meira Kumar


Ahmedabad:  A day after Prime Minister Narendra Modi visited Sabarmati Ashram, former Lok Sabha speaker and Presidential candidate from Opposition Meira Kumar began her campaign from the same venue today. Meira Kumar too, like Mr Modi, paid homage to Mahatma Gandhi and spun 'charkha'. “Everyone knows the importance of Sabarmati and Sabarmati's Sant (Mahatma Gandhi). Just by going there one gets Shakti (power),” Ms Kumar told mediapersons here. “The unity of Opposition is based on ideology that we have learnt from Mahatma Gandhi. So after filing the nomination and scrutiny, the first thing I did was to visit Sabarmati Ashram and pay my respects.” Later speaking to mediapersons at Congress party head office in the state Rajiv Gandhi Bhavan, Ms Kumar said her fight against NDA candidate Ram Nath Kovind was based on ideology where all have right to free speech, social equity, poverty alleviation and destruction of casteism. She also expressed her reservations of terming her fight against Ram Nath Kovind as “Dalit vs Dalit”. “To an extent it makes me happy but I am also worried that even in 2017 we are being judged on the basis of caste. In the past too several leaders from upper castes have fought Presidential Polls but never was the issue of their caste discussed,” she said. The former speaker said one must criticise this mindset. “If such elections were fought on basis of racism anywhere in the world, we would have criticized it. We must criticise if this is being said in our country on the basis of caste,” she asserted. She also paid respect to Sardar Patel, stating that he was her neighbor in Delhi and that she had received his blessings in childhood. On Presidential poll, she said she had written a letter to each member of the electorate and urged them to listen to their “conscience”. “This is an historical opportunity and they must not let this opportunity slip. I hope they would listen to my request,” she added.

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