NEW DELHI—Dalit MP Savitribai Phule, who resigned from the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) last week, has called Prime Minister Narendra Modi a "puppet" in the hands of the RSS.
"The RSS is ruling this country today. Yogi (Adityanath) and Modi do exactly what they are asked to do by the RSS and the RSS people do not believe in the Constitution of India. They follow 'Manusmriti' (an ancient Indian legal text which advocates caste hierarchies)," she said while speaking to HuffPost India.
The Lok Sabha MP from Bahriach seat in Uttar Pradesh said she was insulted and ignored by her party members when she tried to raise the issues of backward communities in Parliament.
"Since 2014 Lok Sabha elections, there has been a steep increase in violence against Dalits, backwards and minorities in our country. People are being killed, women are being raped almost every day in Uttar Pradesh and in other parts of the country. The atrocities against Dalits have reached an insane level. Villages are being burnt, people are being lynched and women are being raped openly. But when I tried to raise these issues in the parliament, the BJP people looked at me with contempt and tried to demoralize me," Phule added.
Phule also said that no action has been taken against Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) and BJP leaders who said the Constitution should be reviewed. She cited all of these as reasons for her resignation.
Earlier in the year, Phule had held rallies and protests against what she claimed was a "conspiracy to end reservations".
She had also protested against the Supreme Court's March ruling to regulate the use of the SC/ST Act—nine people were killed in protests that broke out in reaction to the order. In August, the cabinet was forced to approve an amendment to the Scheduled Castes and the Scheduled Tribes (Prevention of Atrocities) Act to overturn the top court's ruling.
Phule also accused the BJP of using Dalits, OBCs and tribals as just a vote bank.
"They (BJP-RSS) don't have any vision. They come to power only on emotive issues. Now they are raking up the Ram Temple issues because they haven't done anything in the last four and half years. They say they want to make India a 'Hindu Rashtra' but where will Sikhs, Christians, Muslims, Parsis, and Buddhists go then?" she questioned.