Former Gujarat Chief Minister Shankarsinh Vaghela, a former Congress leader and Bharatiya Janata Party, on Friday confirmed that he will join the Nationalist Congress Party, PTI reported. Vaghela said he decided to join the party after meeting Nationalist Congress Party chief Sharad Pawar.
Vaghela said a formal announcement may be made by Sunday. “I have discussed this issue with [Sharad] Pawar Saheb,” Vaghela said. “I think it is a good thing. In public life, a good platform is required to raise the issues of people and nobody should say no to such things.”
On Thursday, Gujarat Nationalist Congress Party leader Jayant Patel said Vaghela will be inducted into the party at an event in the presence of Pawar and senior Nationalist Congress Party leader Praful Patel on January 29 in Ahmedabad.
The development comes ahead of the Lok Sabha elections. In the 2014 General Elections, the BJP won all 26 of the state’s Lok Sabha seats.
Vaghela began his political career with the BJP but quit in 1996 to join the Congress. He was appointment chief minister soon after and later served as textile minister in former Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s government. He also served as the Congress state chief and leader of the Opposition in the Gujarat Assembly.
On July 21, 2017, Shankarsinh Vaghela had quit all party posts within the Congress and stepped down as the leader of Opposition in Gujarat Assembly. In August 2017, Shankarsinh Vaghela resigned from his position as a Member of Gujarat’s Legislative Assembly.