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Lok Sabha Elections 2019: I would have joined Congress long ago, says Shatrughan…

In his first visit to Patna after joining Congress, Patna Sahib MP Shatrughan Sinha on Friday said that he would have perhaps joined the Congress long back, had Mrs (Indira) Gandhi been alive.

Talking to the media during his visit to Sadaquat Ashram, headquarters of the Bihar Pradesh Congress Committee (BPCC), Sihna said he had never spoken against the Congress, even though he remained in the BJP.

“There has been a considerable rise in popularity of Rahul Gandhi. I seem the present and future of India in him. Success of the Congress party in three state polls within a year of Rahul Gandhi’s accession to the chief of the party was no mean achievement,” said Sinha after his grandiose welcome at his new home by the party workers.

Sinha, also known as Bihari Babu, said that he stayed back in the BJP, as he did not wish to leave a party where he had grown up and earned respect. “But things have changed drastically in the last two-three years. Arrogance has taken over the party after the departure of Atal Bihari Vajpyee. It has now become a one-man show and two-man army in the party,” said Sinha, who will be contesting from the Patna Sahib Lok Sabha seat to wrest it for the Congress.

“The country would retrieve its lost glory under the leadership of Rahul Gandhi, who is not just a dynamic leader, but also understands the aspirations of youth, farmers and the poor Indians well. Unlike the BJP leaders, he (Rahul Gandhi) does not take recourse to doling out hallow rhetoric.

Earlier at the Patna airport, Sinha wished BJP candidate and union minister Ravi Shankar Prasad, who is in the fray from Patna Sahib, and exuded confidence that he would set a new record for victory margins. “Prasad is a friend of mine. I have no personal enmity with him. It is a fight for ideology, which cares about the interest of farmers, unemployed youth, national interest and communal harmony,” said the actor turned politician.

Dubbing local BJP leaders as exhausted cartridges, Sinha said that he opted to join the Congress to take forward the people’s fight for self-respect and realise their dreams of a prosperous India, where there was respect for one another. “I came here to honour my words. I had said earlier that the situation could be different, but the location would be same,” said Sinha, adding that he made up his mind after BJP announced Prasad’s candidature for Patna Sahib.

To a query about the contest in Bihar, Sinha said the Grand Alliance (GA) was like a magic wand and would sweep the poll. He also praised RJD chief Lalu Prasad for his understanding of Bihar and said he joined the Congress on his advice and suggestions of other senior leaders of the opposition parties like Mamata Banerjee, Akhilesh Yadav, Mayavati and Arvind Kejriwal.

BPCC president Madan Mohan Jha said that Sinha would wrest the Patna Sahib seat for Congress and infuse a fresh lease of life into the party workers. Congress MLC and AICC media panelist Prem Chandra Mishra lambasted the BJP for its bid to paint the Congress in bad light on the issue of military strikes across the border and said the party always honoured the armed forces. “The Congress needs no lesson on nationalism, as two of its senior most leaders, Indira Gandhi and Rajiv Gandhi, laid down their lives for national interests,” said Mishra.

First Published:
Apr 13, 2019 08:28 IST

Article source: https://www.hindustantimes.com/lok-sabha-elections/lok-sabha-elections-2019-i-would-have-joined-congress-long-ago-says-shatrughan-sinha/story-I6lOARq42UIdrRBeKSNXZM.html

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