Former Himachal Pradesh BJP president Khimi Ram Sharma on Tuesday joined the Congress party in the presence of Rajeev Shukla, party in-charge for the state, in Delhi, barely four months ahead of the Assembly elections. Apart from Shukla, the party’s state joint in-charge Gurkeerat Singh and AICC secretaries Sudhir Sharma and Tejinder Bittu were also present. Ram has been a legislator from Kullu’s Banjar district twice and has reportedly left the party as he was denied a ticket in the previous state polls.
Ram, a former minister and deputy speaker in the state, said he takes pride in joining the party that helped the country attain freedom. Ram, former deputy speaker in the Vidhan Sabha and ex-state minister, said that he was joining Congress to bring about a positive change in the state, and the decision was not based out of discontent with his former party.
“I am not joining the Congress out of any anger towards the BJP. I have taken a well-thought out decision to take the Congress forward in Himachal Pradesh,” he told news agency PTI.
Ram was confident that the Congress would win the upcoming elections due to the anti-incumbency factor playing out against the ruling BJP on various issues such as corruption, unemployment, inflation and employee concerns related to pension schemes.
“We will bring these issues before the people of the state and help form the Congress government in Himachal Pradesh,” he said. Rajiv Shukla, while welcoming Ram to the party, said that it is an indication of which way the wind is blowing in the state.
(With inputs from PTI)