UP orders government offices to put up Ambedkar’s photo

Lucknow, Dec 29 (IANS) The Uttar Pradesh government on Friday once again issued instructions to all government offices to put up a picture of Dr. Bhimrao Ramji Ambedkar.

The government offices told to put up Ambedkar’s picture include the Legislative Assembly, Legislative Council, state secretariat, public sector institutions, municipal corporations/councils and educational institutions.

A state government spokesman said that all these offices had been asked to immediately ensure compliance of the instruction — which was first issued on December 6 — and pointed out that inscribing the dates of Ambedkar’s birth and death under the picture was mandatory.

The move is being seen as an attempt by the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) to woo the Dalits through their icon.

Dalits in two successive electoral outings — Lok Sabha elections in 2014 and state assembly elections earlier this year — had deserted the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and thrown their lot behind the BJP.

The party is seemingly preparing for another long haul and eyeing the Dalit vote bank for the 2019 General Elections.