Samajwadi Party MLC Swami Prasad Maurya met the SP chief Akhilesh Yadav at the Party office on Saturday amid row over his remarks on Ramacharitmanas.
Refusing to apologise for his remarks on the holy book of Hindus, Maurya said that the party is seeking justice for the scheduled castes, scheduled tribes and the backward classes of the country. “To provide justice to the SC, ST and Backward classes of this country, the party will demand a caste-based census first of all. For this, we will write a letter to the Central Government. They (BJP) are slowly abolishing the only weapon of the tribals, Dalits and backward classes, i.e. reservation. We will not let them exploit us,” Maurya said while interacting with the media.
When asked about Akhilesh Yadav’s stand on his statement on Ramacharitmanas, Maurya said, “Akhilesh Yadav is the national president of our party. He will make a statement at the right time.”
Meanwhile, slogans were raised against Akhilesh Yadav by members of the BJP and Hindu Mahasabha. Black flags were also shown by the protesters while he visited Maa Pitambara temple in Lucknow to attend the 108th Mahayaga event.
Earlier this month, the SP leader sparked a major controversy after he demanded the deletion of “insulting comments and sarcasm” targeted at particular castes and sects in Ramcharitmanas, a poem based on the epic Ramayana.
Speaking to ANI, the former BJP leader had said, “I don’t have any issue with Ramcharitramanas but parts of it have insulting comments and sarcasm directed at particular castes and sects. Those should be removed.”
Maurya further claimed that in the Ramcharitmanas, which was composed by Tulsidas, there are words hurting the sentiments of the Dalit community.
“The government should take effective action and show sensitivity. It should see that the sentiments of any community are not hurt,” he added.
While Maurya’s remarks gave fresh ammunition to the BJP, SP chief Akhilesh Yadav distanced himself from the remark.
An FIR was filed against the former Cabinet minister over his remark.
The case against Maurya was filed at the Hazratganj police station for allegedly outraging religious feelings with his remark.