BJP loses third minister in Uttar Pradesh as Dharam Singh Saini resigns

Defections from the ruling BJP not stopped but continued  on Thursday, as Uttar Pradesh minister Dharam Singh Saini resigned from the party.

Dharam Singh Saini is the Minister of State (Independent Charge), Ayush, Food Security and Drug Administration.

When Uttar Pradesh minister Dharam Singh Saini on Thursday resigned from the BJP, he becoming the ninth MLA to break off ties with the saffron party just days ahead of the state assembly polls.

Earlier in the day, Dharam Singh Saini returned the security cover and residence allotted to him by the state government, which set off speculation that he was going to quit the BJP.

The BJP’s Uttar Pradesh unit has witnessed a string of defections over the last few days, starting with cabinet minister Swami Prasad Maurya. 

At the time, Maurya had said that many more legislators would follow suit. He said he was resigning due to “gross neglect” towards Dalits, backwards, farmers, unemployed youth and small traders. Over the following days, several other BJP MLAs Brajesh Prajapati, Roshan Lal Varma, Bhagwati Sagar, Mukesh Verma, Vinay Shakya among others, quit the party.

OBC leader Dara Singh Chauhan resigned on Wednesday from the Yogi Adityanath cabinet and appeared to be headed towards the Samajwadi Party. 

Chauhan said he had worked with dedication for the past five year but Dalits, the OBCs and the unemployed did not get justice from the BJP government.

Dharam Singh Saini is said to be a close aide of Maurya.

Earlier, Suheldev Bharatiya Samaj Party (SBSP) chief Om Prakash Rajbhar claimed that one to two ministers would quit the Yogi Adityanath Cabinet daily and this figure would go up to 18 by January 20. 

Rajbhar has struck an alliance with the Samajwadi Party for the 2022 assembly elections.

The Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections will be held in seven phases. Polling will be held from February 10 and the counting of votes will take place on March 10.