25 July, 2021

Aaj Ka Minister: Goonda King Of Kunda

History-sheeter Raghuraj Pratap Singh, a minister under Kalyan, runs his own fiefdom

Aaj Ka Minister: Goonda King Of Kunda

HE is the archetypal Chhote Thakur, straight out of a Mumbaiya Hindi potboiler. He holds court in his courtyard and delivers instant justice—slaps   jurmaana (fine) on 'erring subjects' or orders a 'sound' thrashing. His subjects, poor men, women and children, touch his feet with their foreheads, pleading for mercy. Outside his fortressed Bainti Estate, people queue up every morning to offer salutations, their bodies bent at 90 degrees, hands raised in a namaste above their heads.

The 'raja' in question is Kunwar Raghuraj Pratap Singh alias Raghubir Singh alias Toofan Singh alias Raja Bhaiya. He also happens to be the minister of programme implementation in Kalyan Singh's criminal-studded jumbo Cabinet. Add to this the fact that he is the most dreaded name in Pratapgarh and Allahabad districts. With 25 cases against him, ranging from cheating to murder, the honourable mantri is a prime example of criminals making it good in politics.

In hometown Kunda, he is the awesome symbol of feudalism. Clad in a Rajput-style...

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