In a dig at dynastic politics, Union minister Nitin Gadkari Tuesday said the BJP is not a "family party like that of mother-son and father-son" and it is a common man's party where a small-time worker like him could rise to become its president and a tea seller could become the country's Prime Minister. The Narendra Modi government has taken a historic decision to provide 10 percent quota in jobs and educational institutions to the economically weaker sections (among the general category), without reducing the reservation of SCs, STs and Other Backward Classes, Gadkari said.
The union minister was speaking at a function organised by various organisations to thank him and the Centre for the gesture. "Our party is not the one like that of mother-son, father-son, family party. I was a small-time party worker and used to paste posters. My mother was not an MLA nor my father an MP," he said. Gadkari said he did not also go to Delhi seeking any post.
"But, despite all this a worker like me working at the grassroot went on to become BJP's president and a tea seller from a poor family went on to become the Prime Minister," the Minister for Road Transport and Highways said. "BJP is common man's party. We never thought on the lines of caste, religion and language.
We serve for the poor, under privileged and vulnerable sections and we have adopted the mission to change their lives. So, 10 percent reservation is for those poor who did not have any facilities," he said. The BJP leaders have hit out at dynastic politics and has in particular targeted the Congress, saying it is a "maa-beta" (mother and son) party.
The senior BJP leader alleged that the Congress government 'garibi hatao' slogan and programmes announced in that regard did not eradicate poverty and poor became more poorer. "But, when our government came, we decided that politics of 21st century is the politics for progress and development.
We built good roads, provided water to farmers lands and created jobs to unemployed and are making efforts to eradicate poverty. The developmental works done by our government is in front of you. The Modi government at the Centre extended all necessary help to both Andhra Pradesh and Telangana in the last five years which no government did over the past 50 years," he claimed.
Gadkari said his party wanted to bring transparent governance and work for the country's progress and rid it of fear, hunger, terror and corruption. Gadkari said in his ministry projects worth Rs 10 lakh crore have been awarded across the country and no contractor had met him nor had to come to his office to get the contract work.
The Polavaram project in Andhra Pradesh is funded by the Central government, he said. Gadkari said 1100 TMC ft of Godavari river water goes waste into the sea and a scheme has been prepared wherein it will be diverted into the Krishna and then to Penna river and from the Penna to the Cauvery to reach Tamil Nadu.
"In Tamil Nadu, Telangana and Andhra Pradesh, the BJP did not succeed in big way but we dont discriminate on political (lines). Good governance and development are among our party's principles," Gadkari added. Telangana BJP president K Laxman said the Telangana government should also implement the 10 percent reservation announced by the Centre for the economically weaker sections (EWS) from the general category.
(With inputs from agencies.)