Updated: December 21, 2021 6:40:40 pm
Former Punjab cabinet minister Rana Gurmit Singh Sodhi Tuesday resigned from the Congress and joined the BJP in the presence of party leaders Gajendra Shekhawat and Bhupendra Yadav in Delhi.
Rana Sodhi has been a confidant of former chief minister Captain Amarinder Singh. A sitting MLA from Guru Har Sahai, Sodhi was dropped from the cabinet after Amarinder’s ouster.
Sodhi is the first sitting MLA and former cabinet minister to quit Congress after Amarinder left the party.
He is likely to contest the assembly election from Ferozepur on BJP ticket. Ferozepore is considered a Hindu-dominated constituency. His shift to the BJP comes on a day when Amarinder is holding a rally in Patiala to blow the poll bugle.
Sources said Sodhi had quit the Congress to join the saffron party in consultation with Amarinder.
In his resignation letter to AICC president Sonia Gandhi, Sodhi said, “I have been hand-picked by our illustrious leader late Shri Rajiv Gandhi Ji to contest my first election to the Punjab State Assembly from Guru Har Sahai Assembly Constituency in Ferozepur district in 1985. I have all through been a hardcore worker of the party with unflinching loyalty through the thick and thin. I have contested and won Punjab Assembly elections from Guru Har Sahai constituency four times consecutively, from 2002 till date. l am deeply hurt by the bickering and in-fighting within the Punjab Congress. This is damaging the party as well as causing serious problems for the state and the government. I feel suffocated and helpless in the present situation, especially when the party has put state’s security and communal harmony at stake. Rather than taking action to restore peace in Punjab, the senior Congress leadership is hell bent on destroying the border state for their personal gains.”
Sodhi said he was putting in his resignation as he “agonised” with the current state of affairs in the party.
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