Former Karnataka Chief Minister Jagadish Shettar, who had joined the Congress last year, returned to the Bharatiya Janata Party on Thursday in Delhi.

Shettar, 67, had left the BJP in April after he was denied a ticket for the Assembly elections.

He rejoined the BJP at the party headquarters in Delhi in the presence of former Karnataka Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa, state party chief BY Vijayendra and Union ministers Bhupender Yadav and Rajeev Chandrasekhar.

“The party gave me a lot of responsibilities in the past,” he was quoted as saying by ANI. “Due to some issues, I went to the Congress party. In the last eight to nine months, there were a lot of discussions. BJP workers asked me to come back to the BJP.”

He added: “Even Yediyurappa ji and Vijayendra ji wanted me to come back to the BJP. I am rejoining the party with the belief that Narendra Modi ji has to become the prime minister once again,”

Shettar had met Union Home Minister Amit Shah days before his formal re-entry into the party.

After leaving the BJP last year, the Congress gave the leader from the Lingayat community a ticket to the Hubli-Dharwad Central Assembly constituency, but he lost to BJP’s Mahesh Tenginakai by more than 34,000 votes.