FORMER BSP minister Badshah Singh, who had joined BJP before the 2012 UP elections, joined Congress on Friday in Lucknow. State Congress president Raj Babbar maintained that Singh joining the party would send a message to the entire Bundelkhand region. Along with Singh, BSP leader Waris Ali from Bahraich also joined Congress.
Singh, who was arrested in the Labour and Construction Cooperative Federation (LACCFED) scam in 2012 and acquitted in 2015, said he was impressed with Congress’ promise to waive off loans of farmers if it comes to power in the UP polls next year.
A four-time MLA, Singh had been a minister during the previous Mayawati regime and had contested the 2012 state elections from Mahoba on a BJP ticket but lost.
“I come from a region where a large population is dependent on agriculture. If the UPA government under Manmohan Singh had not waived off loans, over 100 farmers would have committed suicide in Bundelkhand and thousands of women would not have got married,” he claimed. He added that he had started his political career 27 years ago from Nagar Panchayat Kharaila in Mahoba.
Asked about Singh’s controversial past, Satyadev Tripathi, chairman of the Uttar Pradesh Congress communication department, said: “Badshah Singh has been acquitted by the court.”