Tej Bahadur Yadav, the BSF jawan who was sacked for his video protesting about the food, will be the SP-BSP alliance candidate against Prime Minister Narendra Modi from Varanasi.
The Samajwadi Party made the surprise announcement on Monday to replace Shalini Yadav who had been named as the alliance’s candidate a week back. Shalini Yadav had unsuccessfully contested the Varanasi mayoral election in 2017 and is the daughter-in-law of Shyam Lal Yadav, a former Congress Rajya Sabha member.
“I am the real chowkidar, who protected the boundaries of the nation for 21 years and raised voice against corruption. Chowkidar term doesn’t suit PM Modi,” Tej Bahadur, who originally hails from Haryana, stated.
The former BSF jawan had filed his papers from Varanasi as an Independent last month, but on Tuesday he changed his nomination to Samajwadi Party candidate and praised party chief Akhilesh Yadav for promising a Yadav regiment in the Army.
In 2017, Tej Bahadur Yadav, then with BSF’s 29th battalion, posted four videos complaining about conditions soldiers work under and also the quality of food that was allegedly being worked.
“We only get a ‘parantha’ and tea at breakfast and this is without any pickle or vegetables… we slog for 11 hours and at times we have to stand throughout the duty hours. For lunch, we get ‘dal’ (pulses) which only has ‘haldi’ (turmeric) and salt… with roti. This is the quality of the food we get… how can a jawan do his duty?
“I request the Prime Minister to get this probed… no one shows our plight,” Yadav had stated.