Jailed former minister of the previous Bahujan Samaj Party government in Uttar Pradesh Babu Singh Kushwaha’s wife and brother joined the ruling Samajwadi Party (SP) on Saturday morning.
Kushwaha, a prominent OBC leader and once trusted lieutenant of Mayawati, was jailed in March 2012 after he was expelled by the BSP following his alleged involvement in the National Rural Health Mission scam which saw a number of high-profile murders in the state. He later joined the BJP but was asked to leave after voices of dissent gained pitch within that party too. Kushwaha had been facing political oblivion ever since. He is currently in Ghaziabad’s Dhasna jail.
His wife and brother’s joining the SP is being viewed as a significant move to regain political prominence as the Kushwahas have alleged business interests to take care of.
SP spokesperson Rajendra Chowdhary declared the joining of Kushwaha’s wife Shiv Kanya, brother Shiv Charan and their supporters during a joint press conference at the party’s state headquarters in the afternoon.
Shiv Kanya Kushwaha did not say anything while Shiv Charan Kushwaha said, “Today we have come only to join. So I won’t say anything else. Would reply to yours questions next time.”
Amidst volleys of questions from newspersons, Chaudhary and the Kushwahas ended the press conference abruptly.
Kushwahas’ entry, apparently is a deft caste move on the part of Samajwadi Party (SP) as Kushwahas—OBCs—are in influential size—nearly 3% or above in about 18 Lok Sabha seats across parts of Bundelkhand, eastern UP.