'Vikas' and 'Double Engine Growth' are Good Talking Points. But Mandal and Kamandal Still Define UP Elections

UP, Punjab, Uttarakhand Elections 2022 LIVE Updates: BJP’s Marathon Seat-sharing Meet Ends After 14 Hrs; Rajbhar Warns of More Defections

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Labour Minister Swami Prasad Maurya quit. Though Maurya, a prominent Other Backward Class (OBC) leader, has not made it clear that he is joining the Samajwadi Party, the SP has tweeted a welcome message. The recent developments appear to strengthen the SP’s influence among the non-Yadav OBCs in the state, less than a month before the crucial elections that will also have an impact on the 2024 parliamentary polls.

OP Rajbhar, who was a former ally of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and now the SP, told in an interview with Hindustan Times that BJP is the enemy of OBCs and that more leaders will quit the party. A key OBC leader himself, Rajbhar said that keeping its OBC base intact will be a challenge for the BJP. “If you were to speak to BJP leaders on a spy cam, they would reveal the same — that no one listens to them, that they are helpless. Mark my words, on March 10 (counting day) no BJP leader will step out of their home and they will switch off their TVs,” he said. Three other BJP MLAs also announced their resignation from the party on Tuesday.

Uttar Pradesh minister Kapil Dev Aggarwal was on Wednesday booked for violating the model code of conduct and the Covid protocol for allegedly holding a rally in a public ground here without permission. The UP minister for Vocational Education and Skill Development was booked along with 40 BJP workers after they held the public rally at Ramlila Tila locality under the Kotwali police station area of the district on Tuesday, police said.

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