In a big jolt to BJP in poll-bound Rajasthan, its MLA and son of former BJP’s Union Minister Jaswant Singh, Manvendra Singh, today joined Congress, in the presence of Congres president Rahul Gandhi in New Delhi.
An MLA from Sheo in Barmer, Manvendra Singh had announced last month that he was quitting the BJP. He was formally inducted into the Congress in the presence of party President Rahul Gandhi and Rajasthan Congress chief Sachin Pilot.
Congress General Secretary Ashok Gehlot said Manvendra Singh’s presence would further boost the Congress fortunes in the Assembly polls. In view of discontent among formidalbe Rajputs in the state, who are traditionally supporters of BJP, his joining Congress is bound to influencie poll-outcome.
In the run up to the Swabhiman Rally, speculation had been rife that with members of the Rajput community openly speaking about their resentment against Vasundhara Raje government, Manvendra Singh had been hoping to benefit from the anger by parting ways with the BJP and contesting as an Independent or on Congress ticket. The Congress may hope to gain support of his erstwhile followers.