Rukamani Devi Nishad, sister of 'Bandit Queen' Phoolan Devi on Sunday joined the Samajwadi Party (SP) in presence of former chief minister and party president Akhilesh Yadav. Nishad quit the Pragatisheel Manav Party (PMP), a hyperlocal political outfit in Uttar Pradesh, to join hands with Akhilesh Yadav. Her dacoit-turned-politician sister Phoolan Devi was also a parliamentarian from the Samajwadi Party before being assassinated in 2001.
"I am leaving behind my Pragatisheel Manav Party and it feels like coming home," she said after joining the SP. The sister of the Bandit Queen called Akhilesh his younger brother and vowed to make him the chief minister again.
Besides Rukamani Devi, former MP Ramakant Yadav, known for frequently switching his loyalty, also returned to the Samajwadi Party. Yadav who was an SP member had joined the BSP in 2004 before switching over to the BJP in 2008. Ahead of the 2019 elections, he had joined the Congress party but got expelled on Thursday due to anti-party activities.
"I am overwhelmed and overjoyed at this homecoming. I will be Akhilesh Yadav’s soldier now," Yadav said after returning to the Samajwadi Party.
Reacting to the large influx of leaders from other political parties in into the Samajwadi Party, Akhilesh Yadav said that it (other leaders joining the SP) makes apparent that the BJP will be ousted from the power in 2022.
"The way leaders from other parties are joining the SP and increasing the SP family, it is quite apparent that SP will be able to oust BJP from UP in 2022 UP assembly polls," the former UP CM added.