Lucknow: Bahujan Samaj Party supremo Mayawati on Wednesday said she respects national song 'Vande Mataram' and gives utmost importance to national interest.
The BSP president was reacting to reports of controversy sparked by Meerut mayor Sunita Verma on Tuesday during the oath-taking ceremony. The mayor is reported to have opposed the singing of Vande Mataram during the event.
In a statement on Wednesday, while accusing the ruling Bharatiya Janta Party (BJP) of playing 'dirty politics', Mayawati said BJP workers attempted to hijack the event by raising anti-BSP slogans and singing Vande Mataram. In the commotion that ensued, the mayor could not realise that Vande Mataram was being sung, hence she did not stand up. The officials present on the dais should have alerted the mayor.
Ms Mayawati pointed out that her party staunchly follows all democratic traditions, including singing of national anthem and national song, but the mayor's oath-taking ceremony should have been handled by government officials in a smooth and peaceful manner.
The BSP leader said by inviting only BJP mayors to meet him in New Delhi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had given an example of 'cheap politics'.
"It was all right if the BJP mayors were invited to BJP headquarters in New Delhi, but just like the Raj Bhavan in Lucknow, PM's house was used for BJP and RSS activities," she pointed out. UNI