Rajbhar, Shivpal attend dinner hosted by CM Yogi in honour of NDA presidential candidate
Lucknow, July 8: SP ally Om Prakash Rajbhar and Shivpal Singh Yadav on Friday attended a dinner hosted by UP Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath in the honour of NDA's presidential candidate Droupadi Murmu, a development showing chink in the opposition camp that is backing Yashwant Sinha for the post.
Muscleman-politician and Jansatta Dal Loktantrik chief Raghuraj Pratap Singh, also known as Raja Bhaiya, and the lone BSP MLA in Uttar Pradesh, Uma Shankar Singh, were also present at the CM’s official residence, sources in the Chief Minister's Office said.
Raja Bhaiya also confirmed to the media that he, Rajbhar, Shivpal Yadav and Uma Shankar Singh were part of the dinner. Suheldev Bhartiya Samaj Party (SBSP) chief Rajbhar, who was not invited by Samajwadi Party (SP) chief Akhilesh Yadav in the opposition leaders’ meeting with Sinha, has already said he will take a call on the presidential polls on his own.
Earlier in the day he had said in Mau, where his party held a meeting, that the SBSP will make public its decision on the presidential polls on July 12. But his presence at the dinner hosted by Adityanath indicates his inclination towards the NDA nominee.
Shivpal Yadav, whose relationship with his nephew Akhilesh Yadav is strained after the UP polls results, has been meeting Adityanath and attacking the SP chief on several issues. Though not aligned with either ruling or opposition camp, Raja Bhaiya's presence in the dinner shows his preference for the presidential polls.
The presence of BSP MLA Uma Shankar Singh in the dinner reconfirms Mayawati's announcement of support to Murmu, who is a woman and also hails from Scheduled Tribes. Rajbhar's party has six MLAs in the UP assembly.
He had fought the recent Uttar Pradesh assembly polls as a partner of SP-led opposition grouping. Earlier, on arrival here, Murmu met Adityanath and other NDA Legislators in a meeting seeking their support for July 18 elections. PTI