New Delhi, Jul 16 (PTI) Swatantra Dev Singh, an OBC leader, was Tuesday appointed the BJP's Uttar Pradesh president, replacing Union Minister Mahendra Nath Pandey. Pandey was inducted in the Union Cabinet, necessitating a change of guard in the state. Singh is a Kurmi, one of the influential backward castes in the state. His appointment is seen as part of the BJP's effort to consolidate its support among the OBCs, who strongly backed it in the state Assembly and recent Lok Sabha polls. .