Lucknow: Geared up for upcoming UP polls scheduled in 2012, the Congress party is leaving no stone unturned to woo the Dalits voters regarded as the traditional vote bank of the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP).

The Central leadership of Congress opines that the rigid attitude of BSP government has created a section of ignored Dalits in the state. According to party leaders, this particular section of the Dalits is looking for a new political base and therefore their possibilities of switching alliance to the Congress are high.

Considering the fact, the Congress is working on Dalit agendas for the past one year. On the occasion of late Rajiv Gandhi’s birth anniversary on August 20, the Congress has organised a conference for Dalits in the state capital.

The party has decided to hold a Dalit conference on August 20 which is happened to be Rajiv Gandhi's birth anniversary too. In October Dalit panchayats will be held in state's 18 divisions with core focus on Lucknow Panchayat. Union Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde along with prominent Congress leaders will participate in these Panchayats.

A former Minister and Dalit MP said, “We need a big turnout of Dalits in the first Panchayat, otherwise it would send a wrong message.”  He added, “To shake the BSP party base in the state, it is important for us to ensure a huge turnout in Pachayats.”

Congress state chief Rita Bahuguna Joshi claimed that the Panchyats prove a success in all 17 divisions of Uttar Pradesh. “Not only Dalits but all sections have reflected an inclination towards the party”, she added

JPN/Bureau