Updated: January 28, 2021 1:20:35 am
Congress’s Vagra taluka general secretary Imran Bhatti joined the BJP with more than 200 supporters, all Muslims youths, in Bharuch district Tuesday. BJP legislator Arunsinh Rana and party’s district unit president Marutisinh Atodariya welcomed the newcomers, most of whom are residents of Vasti Khandali and Chanchvel villages, sources said.
The BJP had won from the Vagra Assembly seat, while the taluka panchayat went to the party recently after an elected Congress representative defected to the former.
Bhatti (29), who earlier won the Youth Congress election, has been the Congress’s general secretary from the Vagra Assembly constituency since 2016. A 2015 district-level karate champion, Bhatti had won the state championship in 2016 and the national championship in 2017. In 2018, he won an international championship in the 100-kilogramme category at an event held in Dubai.
On Wednesday, Bhatti said he joined the BJP as it does not believe in any caste, creed, or religion. “I want to work for my community and my people, so I have joined the party… Congress leaders portray the BJP as an anti-Muslim party and create fear among the community, but I have not seen any such thing among the BJP leaders in Bharuch and Vagra,” he added.
Bhatti also thanked the BJP for supporting him during the national- and international-level championships.
BJP MLA from Vagra seat Arunsinh Rana said this was for the first time that such a large number of Muslim youths had joined the BJP in Vagra. “We welcome them… I have faith that educated Muslim youths joining our party will only make the BJP stronger,” he said.
Welcoming the Congress supporters into the party fold, Bharuch district BJP president Marutisinh Atodariya said, “Vagra has given the best example to the country that BJP does not believe in any caste, creed, or religion.”
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