In Hamirpur, Sadhvi Niranjan Jyoti is seen as a changed woman since she became an MLA and within a year, an MP from Fatehpur, which borders this gateway to Bundelkhand. ‘Sadhvi mataria gayin rahein’, this is how Indivar Singh, her voter in Hamirpur, explains that power might have gone to her head.
Jyoti, who was a non-entity in Bundelkhand politics, won the Hamirpur seat in 2012 elections because of her earthy sense and the connect she had with the people.
“She was simple and suave, always speaking softly and devoid of inhibitions,” says Mahesh Awasthi, who has chronicled her political life.
When people saw her in a vitriolic avatar on television, they knew she had a problem adjusting with new found power.
Last week, Jyoti was angry at not getting a vehicle from Kanpur administration at the Kanpur railway station. She hit out at the ruling SP government, accusing it of conspiring for her murder.
“She called Azam Khan a nikamma and called other leaders names acerbically. What she uttered in Delhi is just a continuation of what she’s been doing,” says Awasthi.
Jyoti worked as a daily wage worker before she renounced the material world at insistence of her guru, Achootanand. She then came in touch with powerful religious leader Swami Parmanand—the man behind her political rise.
Parmanand is the vice-president VHP’s Ram Temple Margdarshak Committee. He got her a ticket, first as an MLA and then MP for her services rendered in the Ram temple movement.