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Akhilesh reinstates Raja Bhaiya as food, civil supplies minister

Controversial independent MLA Raghuraj Pratap Singh alias Raja Bhaiya, who was sworn in as the minister recently, was on Saturday given charge of food and civil supplies department.

‘In consultation with the chief minister, governor has directed to allocate portfolio of food and civil supplies to Raja Bhaiya,’ a notification issued by chief secretary Javed Usmani said.

Till now Samajwadi Party spokesperson and prison minister Rajendra Chaudhary was holding the additional charge of the department.  He resigned the next day after the murder of DSP Zia-ul-Haque’s at Balipur village in Pratapgarh district on 2 March, 2013.

The move to re-induct him is said to have been governed by political compulsions with the Samajwadi Party eyeing the Thakur or Kshatriya voters considering that the BJP is also trying to manage the Thakur votes.

Raja Bhaiya, who has eight criminal cases against him, was booked for criminal conspiracy in the DSP murder case and named in the FIR lodged by the police officer’s wife, Parveen Azad. Before stepping down, he was the Food and Civil Supplies and Prisons Minister.

44-year-old Raja Bhaiya was sworn in by governor BL Joshi at Raj Bhawan in the presence of SP supremo Mulayam Singh Yadav, chief minister Akhilesh Yadav and senior cabinet minister Mohd Azam Khan.

The former food and civil supplies minister had to resign from the cabinet after being named by DSP Haq’s wife Parveen Azad in the murder case in March. Though CBI gave clean chit to Raja Bhaiya, Azad had filed a protest application against it.
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