Gujarat: Alpesh Thakor, his aide to join BJP today

Gandhinagar: Maverick OBC leader Alpesh Thakor, who quit as a Congress legislator after casting his vote in favour of BJP candidates in the July 5 Rajya Sabha elections in Gujarat, is set to embrace the ruling BJP on Thursday, along with another rebel MLA from his community Dhavalsinh Jhala.

An announcement was made by the Gujarat Kshatriya Thakor Sena (GKTS), of which Alpesh Thakor is the president, and Jhala a member. "Both former Congress legislators, Alpesh Thakor and Dhavalsinh Zala will join the BJP at the party's Shri Kamalam headquarters at 4 p.m. tomorrow (Thursday)," Jagatsinh Thakor, the vice president of GKTS said in a statement. Sources said the decision was taken by the core committee of GKTS.

Thakor and Jhala had resigned from the Congress on April 10 in the run-up to the Lok Sabha elections claiming that they had been "insulted" and "deceived" by the party leaders, but they had not quit as MLAs. They did so on July 5 after voting for S Jaishankar and Jugal Kishore Thakor for two Rajya Sabha seats, left vacant by Union ministers Amit Shah and Smriti Irani.

Thakor had joined the Congress during the December 2017 State Assembly elections and won from Radhanpur seat in North Gujarat on a party ticket, along with Jhala from Bayad in Aravalli district. Among several other things, Thakor was made Secretary in-charge of Bihar affairs of the party along with senior Shaktisinh Gohil, also from Gujarat. Both are likely to be inducted in the BJP on Thursday in the presence of senior leaders of the party.

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