Born in Baghai village of Naujheel area in Mathura district, Ram Babu Kathelia, 60, has been involved in farmers' politics for the past two decades. He began his political career with the Lok Dal. He later moved to the BJP and finally landed in the Congress.
Kathelia shot into the limelight after the Bajna incident in January 2009 when farmers were agitating against acquisition of their land for the Yamuna Expressway in Bajna.
He led the agitation and during a violent clash, a farmer was killed in police firing.
After the farmer's death, the Mayawati government accepted the farmers' demand for better compensation for acquired land.
This propelled Kathelia to prominence and he was invited by farmers in Aligarh to lead their agitation. He was elected unopposed as gram pradhan 25 years ago but lost the election later. He contested the assembly election from Mant constituency in 1996 but lost.
He is now an established farmers' leader in Aligarh and Mathura.