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Big Jolt to BJP as Swami Prasad Maurya, 3 Others ‘Switch Sides’ Before UP Assembly Polls

Uttar Pradesh Assembly Elections 2022: Swami Prasad Maurya, once one of the senior-most leader in the Bahujan Samaj Party, had joined the BJP just before the 2017 Assembly elections.

Updated: January 11, 2022 4:52 PM IST

By India.com News Desk | Edited by Surabhi Shaurya

Big Jolt to BJP as Swami Prasad Maurya, 3 Others 'Switch Sides' Before UP Assembly Polls
Ex-Uttar Pradesh minister Swami Prasad Maurya and Samajwadi Party chief Akhilesh Yadav. (Twitter)

New Delhi: Ahead of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections 2022, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has suffered a massive jolt as Cabinet Minister Swami Prasad Maurya and three other MLAs—Roshan Lal Verma, Brijesh Prajapati and Bhagwati Sagar announced their resignations. In his resignation letter addressed to Governor Anandiben Patel, Maurya, a powerful OBC (Other Backward Class) leader and five-time MLA said that he was upset at the sidelining of Dalits and weaker sections of society.

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Informing about his decision on micro-blogging site Twitter, Maurya, who had joined BJP in 2016, said, “Due to the attitude of gross neglect towards Dalits, backward, farmers, unemployed youth and small and medium-sized traders, I am resigning from the council of ministers of Yogi (Adityanath) of UP.” His daughter Sanghmitra Maurya, however, is a BJP MP from Badaun.

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Later, while speaking to ANI, Maurya said,”‘I have resigned from the Yogi Cabinet keeping in mind the Govt’s attitude against Dalits, backward classes, farmers, youths & traders. I will consult with my supporters and decide on joining another party. Dozens of MLAs will resign in the coming days.”

Meanwhile, sources close to Maurya said that the leader is expected to join Samajwadi Party. Besides, SP chief Akhilesh Yadav has also welcomed him saying, “Warm welcome and greetings to the popular leader Shri Swami Prasad Maurya Ji, who fought for social justice and equality and all the other leaders, workers and supporters who came with him in SP. There will be a revolution of social justice~ There will be a change in 2022.”

Reacting to Swami Prasad Maurya’s decision, UP Deputy CM Keshav Prasad Maurya in a tweet said,”What Swami Prasad Maurya ji’s reasons for resignation were, I do not know. But I appeal to him to sit and talk, hasty decisions often prove to be wrong.”

Reports claimed that the former BJP leader had been upset because his son Utkarsh Maurya had not been “suitably accommodated” in the Yogi Adityanath government.

Swami Prasad Maurya, once one of the senior-most leader in the Bahujan Samaj Party, had joined the BJP just before the 2017 Assembly elections. His resignation and his likely joining the Samajwadi Party is a major jolt for the BJP since he remains popular in his community.

He won the Padrauna seat on a BJP ticket in 2017 and was made Labour Minister.  Sources close to Swami Prasad Maurya said that Sanghmitra Maurya would remain in BJP “for the time being”.

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Published Date: January 11, 2022 3:00 PM IST

Updated Date: January 11, 2022 4:52 PM IST