Congress’ Adampur MLA Kuldeep Bishnoi on Sunday called on Home Minister Amit Shah and Bharatiya Janata Party’s national president J.P. Nadda. Mr. Bishnoi was expelled from all party positions by the Congress for voting against its Rajya Sabha nominee Ajay Maken in Haryana last month and is rumoured to soon join the BJP.
In separate tweets from his handle, Mr. Bishnoi posted the pictures of his meeting with the two leaders and said that he felt honoured to have met them. He said that Mr. Shah was a “true politician” and he felt his “aura” and “charisma” while talking to him during the meeting.
Sources close to Mr. Bishnoi said he might formally join the BJP with his supporters at Delhi later his month.
Mr. Bishnoi has been upset with the Congress’ central leadership for not considering him for the post of Haryana Pradesh Congress Committee president during a reshuffle in May. He was also not comfortable with the party giving former Chief Minister Bhupinder Singh complete control over the State unit with the appointment of his loyalist, former MLA Udit Bhan, as the party chief.
He had made his displeasure public over the party’s decision through a series of tweets then.
Later he voted against his own party nominee during the Rajya Sabha election last month and was expelled from all party positions by the Congress. Reacting to his expulsion, he accused the party of acting “selectively” and blamed this approach of the party for being in “dire straits”. In a series of tweets accompanied with the copy of the expulsion order, Mr. Bishnoi, a four-time MLA, had said: “Congress also has rules for some leaders and exceptions for others. Rules are applied selectively. Indiscipline has been repeatedly ignored in the past. In my case, I listened to my soul & acted on my morals…(sic).”
Non-Jat vote bank
While the BJP’s core non-Jat vote bank in Haryana would be strengthened with the entry of Mr. Bishnoi into its fold, it would also help the saffron party woo the Bishnoi community during the Rajasthan Assembly election next year. The community has a considerable presence in around 30 Assembly constituencies.
Mr. Bishnoi along with his father late Bhajan Lal, a three-time Haryana Chief Minister, had floated the Haryana Janhit Congress in 2007 and later entered into an alliance with the BJP. But Mr. Bishnoi ended the alliance before the 2014 Assembly poll accusing the BJP of not keeping its words on seat-sharing and the post of the Chief Minister. In 2016, he merged his party with the Congress.