Reading the success and failure stories of BSP leader Mayawati, one is reminded of Saul Bellow’s argument, who said, “A great deal of intelligence can be invested in ignorance when the need for illusion is deep.” Going a little deeper into Mayawati’s alleged obnoxious runs into the wonderland of illegal gratification, anyone would feel convinced that she marched into politics as an intelligent player, but chose to afflict herself with a deadly mix of ignorance and delusion. Did she ever think that the way she went ahead allegedly making illegal money for herself and her family, all in the name of fraudulent ‘small contributions’, will sooner or later recoil on her? Obviously, she felt tempted like thousands of others in Indian politics and bureaucracy, that she should also make hay while the sun shines. She forgot in the process that her brief from her Dalit mentor Kanshi Ram was to work for the uplift and amelioration of the deprived sections and not for stashing illegal wealth for herself and her family.
Brother of Mayawati had 400 crore worth benami property
As the media flashed news that the income tax department has attached a “benami” commercial plot worth Rs 400 crore in Noida, belonging to her brother Anand Kumar and his wife Vichiter Lata, four-time Uttar Pradesh chief minister and BSP leader Mayawati, is rattled fearing that the dragnet may be reaching for more assets allegedly piled up by her and her close relatives by dishonest means. Among the many alleged scandalous, money-laundering runs by her kin, companies run by Anand Kumar made abnormal profits up to 18,000 per cent over a period of seven years under probe. During this period, Mayawati served as Uttar Pradesh chief minister for five years from 2007 onwards. One company, named Dia Realtors Pvt Ltd, incredibly made a whopping 45257 per cent profit in the seven-year period. Kumar’s exponential profits have now come under the I-Tax department scanner and may well be taken to a logical conclusion.
Mayawati wriggled out of Taj Heritage Corridor ordeal
Even though there was material evidence of corruption in the 175 crore Taj Heritage Corridor Project case, Mayawati who was Uttar Pradesh chief minister at the time and faced the charge escaped punishment on technical grounds. The case was registered on the orders of the Supreme Court in 2003 after Ajay Agrawal, a former standing counsel for Uttar Pradesh, filed a public interest petition alleging corruption in the Rs 175-crore project to develop land along the Yamuna in the vicinity of the Taj Mahal. Mayawati was then the chief minister of UP.
Modi govt’s resolve to fight corruption
The crackdown on the BSP leader came just a few weeks after the CBI started probing Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav. Statues built by Mayawati are also under ED scanner. It is alleged that the construction of memorials resulted in the loss of over 111.44 crore to the exchequer. It may be noted that the Narendra Modi government’s manifesto declaration of zero tolerance of corruption is real and functional to the point of the rule book. Many corrupt, inefficient and lethargic people have been thrown out the system and many more are waiting to be eased out. The electorate that voted the Modi government to power with a massive mandate, expects it to proceed strongly against all corrupt people, irrespective of their party affiliations. Let’s see how effectively the government is able to fight the tough war against corruption, particularly against the powerful political sharks who have the power and wherewithal to manage any oddities by hook or by crook.
45,257% profit in 7 years!
Cases of corruption against Mayawati’s family have increasingly led to her political isolation in Uttar Pradesh, which was well reflected in the 2017 Uttar Pradesh election and subsequently in the recent Lok Sabha poll. According to media reports, Kumar’s assets worth Rs 1,316 crore, being part of a big scandal, and now under probe, including Rs 440 crore cash, Rs 870 in fixed assets and some landed properties. He owns at least 12 big ghost companies. It is incredible that a company of Anand, named Dia RealtorsPvt Ltd, made a whopping 45257 per cent profit during the period Mayawati was chief minister.
Kanshi Ram had fielded her as the messiah of poor
It is strange, as well as stupefying, that someone who had taken the cudgel of improving the lot of the deprived sections, should herself turn to be an ace exploiter of the society. Years back, Mayawati had merrily set upon a political course the cantors of which Kanshi Ram had spiritedly drawn for her, specifically to see her, in course of time, as the chosen messiah of the country’s downtrodden Dalits who, for centuries, suffered the ignominy of low birth and dead-end menial jobs, earmarked for them, merrily called the plebeian entities by the British. Visualizing in her some early flashes of basic intelligence, sharpness, strong willpower and equanimity of mind, no-so-educated, but politically foresighted Kanshi Ram believed that this aspiring Dalit girl could ably present her ‘gleaming’ persona to the country’s impoverished masses and walk off as a commanding winner within the existing status and expanse of Indian polity. And she could achieve that mark in a very short period, brilliantly practising her political format of social engineering almost on the Nehruvian pattern.
Graft put her back in reverse gear
Giving his initial lessons to this reasonably forward-looking Dalit girl with tips on how to go up fast in a country like India, Kashi Ram made it clear to her that she could not become a ‘ruler’ merely on the strength of Dalits who roughly formed only 16.6 per cent of the country’s population. She picked up the lesson well, invited people of all castes and communities, especially of the higher strata, to be part of her political team, and managed to rise as Chief Minster four times of the largest state of India that sends 80 MPs to Lok Sabha. In the process, she effectively demolished all the well-settled traditional ruling parties of UP, from Congress, BJP to Mulayam Singh Yadav’s Samajwadi Party. But mercifully, she failed to protect the tempo of her success and went down in elections that followed when her real face of an exploiter emerged in the public domain.
‘Miracle of democracy’ turned upside down
The recent poll results have been a big disappointment for this four-time chief minister. Impressed by her incredible feat, former Prime Minister P V Narasimha Rao had called it a “miracle of democracy” when this Dalit woman became chief minister the first time in 1995. Not only that, the BSP supremo even threw hints during the Lok Sabha election campaign that she considered herself in the race for the prime minister’s post, should the opposition manage to contain the BJP. The result, however, turned out to be a great disappointment for her soaring ambitions.
Swagger, conceit bedevilled Mayawati
And why not? Her conceit, narcissism and unbridled swagger had gone past the periphery of shame when she allegedly stashed big money after repeatedly turning to hold chief minister’s lofty position in UP, with the people coming to grasp her shocking priorities and concerns in a better, more informed perspective. It came to the public domain that functioning as chief minister, she allegedly got involved in multiple money-making scandals. In course of her steep ascendance to power, pitifully, she lost the passage of political self-growth, progress and natural blooming. Arrogance and self-righteousness overtook her basic persona that she had sold out to the masses for immediate consumption with the intent to capture power, ignorant of the fact that democracy has substantially matured in India and that the masses could not be taken for a ride every time, especially when a leader in question had turned corrupt, haughty and hubristic.