Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Joginder Chinna on Sunday joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) accusing the party’s Punjab unit chief Bhagwant Mann of converting the party into a “private company”. He had contested the Punjab assembly polls from Dinanagar seat.
Chinna along with his supporters took BJP’s membership in the in the presence of the party’s national vice-president Prabhat Jha and state secretary Punjab Vineet Joshi.
Accusing the AAP of straying from its ideals, Chinna alleged that Mann “is transforming the party into a private company”.
“In order to defeat the Congress in Gurdaspur bypoll, I and my colleagues have decided to join the BJP and ensure Swaran Salaria’s (BJP candidate) victory from the seat,” he said.
Apart from Chinna, others members of AAP who joined BJP on Sunday included AAP’s block president Pratap Singh Jethuwal, Dinanagar market committee’s former chairman Tarsem Singh Malkachak, district secretary Kala Singh Sahewal, district organizing secretary Shivjinder Singh Dala and the party’s district general secretary Balwinder Singh Dalia, according to a BJP party release.
Jha had welcomed Chinna and other AAP leaders saying they will be given due respect in the party.
“The move indicates Swaran Salaria’s victory is inevitable in Gurdaspur,” he said.
On Saturday, AAP leader Kulbhushan Singh, who had contested the last assembly elections from Sujanpur seat, and the party’s general secretary, Lakhvir Singh, had joined the Congress, along with their supporters, in the presence of Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh in Pathankot.
Gurdaspur Lok Sabha bypoll, which was necessitated after the death of BJP MP Vinod Khanna in April this year, will be held on October 11.
(With PTI inputs)