The Congress today said it is already reviewing the cases filed against Dalits during the April protests in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan and Mayawati's remark yesterday was not really a "warning". The Uttar Pradesh leader had said that unless the Congress withdrew the cases filed against the innocent persons in the two states, she would "reconsider" her support to the party.
"Mayawati had not given a warning, She explained the need to build pressure regarding cases filed against the Dalits," Congress spokesperson Tom Vadakkan told reporters today.
The Congress had been on the same side as Mayawati during the all-India strike against the changes in a law meant for prevention of atrocities against the Scheduled Castes and Tribes. Both parties had accused the BJP-led Central government of not taking up the cause of Dalits after the Supreme Court had suggested changes that were seen as compromising the safety and security of the community.
Congress chief Rahul Gandhi had tweeted: "Our Dalit brothers and sisters are today on the streets demanding protection of their rights from the Modi Government. We salute them."
"We are already reviewing the cases filed against the Dalits. The legal process takes time. But the matter will be sorted out," Mr Vadakkan said.
Mayawati, who had ruled out support to the Congress in the run-up to the latest round of assembly elections, had reluctantly backed the party after it failed to gain majority in Madhya Pradesh by a very slim margin.
The support of the Uttar Pradesh leader will also be crucial in the coming Lok Sabha elections. Uttar Pradesh sends 80 lawmakers in parliament - higher than any state.
Earlier today, Danish Ali, a senior leader of HD Kumaraswamy's Janata Dal Secular, a Congress ally, also underscored the importance of withdrawing the case against Dalits for the April protests. "We support the stand of Mayawati. Young people from the Dalit community have been victimized in the BJP-ruled states," he said.