Top 5 This Week

Related Posts

Lone AAP MP Rinku & MLA Angural Switch To BJP In Punjab

The victor & vanquished in the 2022 assembly polls become buddies in joining BJP

Within hours of announcing to go it alone in the Lok Sabha elections in Punjab, after prolonged negotiations on striking a poll alliance with old senior partner in the state Shiromani Akali Dal failed, BJP has begun to show its cards, striking the ruling AAP in the state with a thunderbolt within 24 hours of giving a jolt to the Congress.

After weeks of rumours floating around, AAP’s only Lok Sabha member Sushil Kumar Rinku, its repeat pick for Jalandhar constituency for the 2024 elections, along with Sheetal Angural, the party’s MLA from Jalandhar West, formally joined the BJP in New Delhi on Wednesday. Both had been denying the rumours, claiming that they will stick with the AAP.

Coming a day after three-time Congress MP Ravneet Singh Bittu, representing Ludhiana Lok Sabha constituency for the past two terms from 2014, switched to the BJP, these sensational developments have given credence to the widespread expectations that more crossovers to the BJP can be expected ahead of the polls in the state slated in the last phase on June 1.

Interestingly, the grassroots level politician, Rinku who had first entered the Vidhan Sabha winning on the Congress ticket from Jalandhar West in 2017, was beaten in the next election of 2022 by then AAP candidate Angural from the same seat by over 4,000 votes during the AAP wave which saw the party win a mammoth 92 seats in the 117 member state assembly.

Subsequently, he was drafted into the AAP ahead of the 2023 by-elections to the Jalandhar Lok Sabha seat, necessitated by the death of then MP Santosh Singh Chaudhary of the Congress. He was given the AAP ticket and won by a comfortable 58,000+ votes, becoming the only party Lok Sabha member at the time. He remained in the party less than a year before switching loyalties again in favour of the BJP.

Rinku blamed the AAP government for not giving him enough support for fulfillment of the developmental promises made to the people of the Jalandhar Lok Sabha constituency, pointing to the bad state of roads and other civic amenities both in the urban and rural areas.

On the other hand he acknowledged the support extended to him by the central government in terms of expediting work to complete the Adampur civil airport and providing a Vande Bharat Express stopover to Jalandhar among other developmental initiatives, which he wants to carry forward.

An apparently embarrassed AAP, which had again announced the party ticket for Rinku from Jalandhar for the upcoming elections, termed him as a turncoat who will not be pardoned by the people of the state.

State BJP chief Sunil Jakhar, who was present at the joining ceremony where party national general secretary Vinod Tawde formally welcomed Rinku and Angural in the party fold, hit out at both his ex-party Congress and AAP in Punjab, claiming that both were two sides of the same coin – rudderless and lacking creditable leadership. For AAP, he said, it is a shame that it could not retain its only Lok Sabha member.

Popular Articles