- Mayawati also took potshots at the BJP's star campaigner
- She was responding to Yogi Adityanath's recent remark
- She said both "Ali" and "Bajrangbali" belonged to her own people
Bahujan Samaj Party chief Mayawati today responded to Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath's recent remark that earned him an election code violation notice as she said both "Ali" and "Bajrangbali" were her own people, referring to the Muslim and Hindu communities.
Speaking first in the second joint rally with alliance partner Akhilesh Yadav for the ongoing national election, the BSP chief said she wanted both "Ali" and "Bajrangali". "Ali and Bajangbali, both are our own. That's why we want both Ali and Bajrangbali," she said in Badaun, where Samajwadi Party's Dharmendra Yadav won in the 2014 election despite a BJP wave.
While "Ali" is revered by Muslims as Prophet Mohammad's successor, "Bajrang Bali" is another name for the Hindu god Lord Hanuman.
Mayawati also took potshots at the BJP star campaigner over his controversial comment that Lord Hanuman was from the Dalit community.
"Especially, we also want 'Bajrangbali' as he is related to my own Dalit caste. And the discovery of his caste was not done by me... it is done by Yogi himself," she added.
Mayawati, a Dalit leader, stitched an alliance with arch-rival Akhilesh Yadav to keep the BJP at bay, following a humiliating drubbing in the 2017 UP assembly polls. The idea behind the alliance was to consolidate anti-BJP votes.
The BSP chief on Thursday received a notice from the Election Commission for her comment in which she had asked the Muslim community to not split its vote between her alliance and the Congress.
"I want to tell the people of the Muslim community, don't divide your votes. Instead, you should vote only for candidates of the BSP, SP (Samajwadi Party) and RLD (Rashtriya Lok Dal) so that they win...," she had said at a rally in Deoband.
Yogi Adityanath, BJP's prominent Hindutva face, in a response to Mayawati's vote appeal to the Muslim community, had said the followers of Bajrangbali would vote for his party.
"If the Congress, the SP and the BSP have faith in Ali, then we too have faith in Bajrangbali. The opposition has acknowledged that the followers of Bajrangbali will not vote for them," he had said.