Swamim Prasad Maurya's exit leaves question mark over BSP's poll prospects among non-Yadav OBCs. Here are seven interesting facts about him:
In a big jolt to the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) ahead of the Uttar Pradesh Assembly polls due next year, party heavyweight Swami Prasad Maurya quit the party on Wednesday and accused party supremo Mayawati of auctioning tickets.
Swamim Prasad Maurya’s exit leaves question mark over BSP’s poll prospects among non-Yadav OBCs. Here are seven interesting facts about him:
1) Maurya, 62, was the strongest leader the BSP could bank on for the votes of non-Yadav OBCs, a politically crucial group that has been traditionally behind the party but over which its hold is reducing.
2) Maurya belongs to the biggest caste group among OBCs after Yadavs and Kurmis. Known by the surnames Kachhi, Maurya, Kushwaha, Saini and Shakya, this group is present in most assembly seats from east to west UP.
3) Since the expulsion in 2011 of former minister Babu Singh Kushwaha, who belongs to the same caste group, Maurya was the undeclared OBC face of the party.
4) Maurya, Leader of the Opposition in UP, has been a minister in three governments, and was BSP state president before being elevated to national general secretary in 2012.
5) A Buddhist and a follower of Ambedkar, he was well-versed in the BSP’s ideological principles. His is the most high-profile of the dozen or so desertions since the 2014 polls.
6) A lawyer and a resident of Pratapgarh district, Maurya had started his politics as a member of the Lok Dal’s youth wing in 1980. In 1991, he joined the Janata Dal. He was state general secretary when he quit the Janata Dal.
7) Elected state BSP president in 2008, Maurya grew in stature in the BSP following the expulsion of Kushwaha, an accused in the National Rural Health Mission scam. He was named the party’s national general secretary in 2012. He was the only BSP leader whom Mayawati had authorised to speak to the media.
(With inputs from Indian Express)