Inspired by dacoit-turned- politicians Phoolan Devi and Seema Parihaar, bandit Khadag Singh plans to test his electoral fortunes in the coming Lok Sabha polls Singh, who is currently lodged in Banda jail in connection with 19 cases of murder, loot and abduction, will soon be moving an application in a local court seeking permission to contest elections.
"If permitted by the court, I will definitely contest the Lok Sabha elections from Banda parliamentary constituency," he said at a Karvi court, where he was brought for a hearing. Before being captured from Chitakoot by the Uttar Pradesh police in January, Singh had unleashed a rein of terror in the Yamuna-Chambal ravines of UP and Madhya Pradesh.
Singh shot in the limelight following his rivalry with another bandit Shiv Kumar aka Dadua.
Considered to be a notorious dacoit, Singh is said to have played an important role in bringing down Dadua, who was shot dead in an encounter with the Special Task Force in 2007. Singh, who was active in the ravines for more than a decade carried a cash reward of Rs 65,000 on his arrest. "I am fed up with all this bloodshed and want to reform. I want to devote rest of my life in serving the people," Singh said.
On his election campaign, the dacoit said that his canvassing would be managed by his family members and other kin.
"If granted bail by the court, I myself will campaign and seek people's support during elections," he added. Singh is not the first bandit entering the political fray.
Slain bandit Phoolan Devi, who earned a name after Behmai massacre, won the Lok Sabha elections twice.
Devi, who made a successful political debut as a Samajwadi Party candidate in 1996, was re-elected as the MP in 1999. Following her footsteps, another bandit Seema Parihar also tried her hands in elections, though she failed to make an impact. Parihaar, contested the by-election from Bhadoi constituency as Indian Justice Party candidate.
The former bandit, who had 29 cases against her including those of murder and abduction, had been acquitted in 15. She had joined Samajwadi Party during a convention organised in Auraiya district last year. Other than brigands, their family members too have been trying their luck in the politics in the past. Son of slain bandit Shiv Kumar better known as Dadua, Veer Singh is currently chairperson of Chitrakoot Zila Panchayat, whereas his brother Bal Kumar, is SP candidate from Mirzapur.