Rajbhar leaves friends and foes guessing

Lucknow: Om Prakash Rajbhar, President of the Suheldev Bhartiya Samaj Party (SBSP), is leaving his friends and foes guessing in Uttar Pradesh about his next political move.

The maverick politician is hopping from one camp to another, leaving his friends in alliance parties apprehensive.

While Rajbhar continues to swear his loyalty to the Samajwadi Party (SP), he has no qualms about meeting his ‘friends’ in the BJP.

His recent meeting with state minister Daya Shankar Singh sparked off a major controversy but Rajbhar remained unfazed.

“I met Daya Shankar Singh for some work related to my constituency and besides, he is an old friend,” he said.

The ‘old’ friend, according to sources, is maintaining his ties with Rajbhar and the two do not rule out ‘possibilities’ in the future.

The relationship between Rajbhar and Akhilesh Yadav is also cooling off.

Rajbhar tried to play peacemaker between Akhilesh and his estranged uncle Shivpal recently but both the warring leaders gave him a cold shoulder.

Sources said that Akhilesh has neither spoken about the upcoming Rajya Sabha elections nor the Presidential polls to Rajbhar which indicates the level of relationship between the allies.

Political experts believe that the SBSP may have won six seats in alliance with the SP but his party’s victory percentage decreased significantly compared to the last Assembly elections.

In 2017, SBSP contested eight seats in alliance with BJP and won four seats. This time out of 18 seats, the party could win only six seats.

Om Prakash Rajbhar’s son Arvind Rajbhar also lost the election.

The Rajbhar community comprises about 4 per cent of the population in Uttar Pradesh, with a significant presence in the state’s eastern region.

Om Prakash Rajbhar wields considerable influence among these voters, and it was due to their opposition that the BJP had to suffer losses in many districts of Purvanchal.


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