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Friday, March 1, 2024
Udaipur Standard Hindi

Gujarat: Six AAP councilors join ruling BJP in Surat Municipal Corporation

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The corporators joined the saffron party late on Friday night in the presence of Gujarat Minister of State for Home Harsh Sanghvi (Image/Twitter: Surat BJP)

The corporators joined the saffron party late on Friday night in the presence of Gujarat Minister of State for Home Harsh Sanghvi (Image/Twitter: Surat BJP)

Five AAP corporators had joined the BJP in February 2022, but one of them returned to the AAP fold. Now, with six more corporators joining the ruling party, AAP’s strength has come down to 17

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) suffered a jolt in Gujarat’s Surat city when six of its corporators in the local body joined the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), a party functionary said on Saturday.

These corporators joined the saffron party late on Friday night in the presence of Gujarat Minister of State for Home Harsh Shanghvi.

In the Surat Municipal Corporation elections in February 2021, AAP had put up an impressive performance and emerged as the opposition party, winning 27 seats in the 120-member body. The BJP had won 93 seats, while the Congress failed to open its account.

Five AAP corporators had joined the BJP in February 2022, but one of them returned to the AAP fold. Now, with six more corporators joining the ruling party, AAP’s strength has come down to 17.

Speaking at their reception, Minister Sanghvi said, “AAP corporators have resigned from their party and joined BJP.” He said that the real face of AAP is coming in front of the country today.

The minister told reporters, “Just as AAP leaders left no stone unturned to defame the people of Gujarat and the state, AAP councilors joined the BJP with a resolve for the development of their respective wards.”

One of these six corporators, Ruta Kheni, said that she decided to join the BJP after being influenced by the ideology of the saffron party and the working style of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Its good performance in the 2021 Surat civic polls had boosted the Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP’s confidence ahead of the December 2022 assembly polls. Although it contested all 182 assembly seats, it managed to win only five, and not even one in Surat.

Meanwhile, the state unit of AAP alleged that its corporators were being lured and threatened to join the BJP.

In a video statement, AAP councilor Dipti Sakaria alleged that she was invited to a BJP minister’s residence in the state capital Gandhinagar, where she was offered money to join the BJP.

“I informed our general secretary Manoj Sorathia about what is going on. Meanwhile, the matter came to the fore after AAP councilors joined the BJP. It is sad to see the way BJP is misleading him to join the party.

Another AAP corporator Rachna Hirapara said the BJP was trying to convert AAP corporators after winning the elections.

He said, “We have been getting offers ever since we won the election. BJP has been making offers and many councilors fell for it and took up to Rs 50 lakh to join the ruling party.”

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(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed)

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