Padmaja Venugopal, Daughter Of Ex-Kerala CM Quits Congress, Joins BJP Due To 'Total Neglect From Party'

Padmaja Venugopal, Daughter Of Ex-Kerala CM Quits Congress, Joins BJP Due To 'Total Neglect From Party'

The induction ceremony was held in Delhi in the presence of Prakash Javadekar, general secretary in charge of Kerala, where the senior Congress leader accepted BJP membership.

K RAVEENDRANUpdated: Friday, March 08, 2024, 10:24 AM IST
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Padmaja Venugopal, Daughter Of Ex-Kerala CM Quits Congress, Joins BJP Due To 'Total Neglect From Party' |

Kerala: BJP made another significant catch in Kerala when Padmaja Venugopal, the daughter of former chief minister and Congress strongman K Karunakaran and state party general secretary, joined BJP ahead of the crucial Lok Sabha election.

The induction ceremony was held in Delhi in the presence of Prakash Javadekar, general secretary in charge of Kerala, where the senior Congress leader accepted BJP membership.

In what has caused acute embarrassment to the state Congress leaders, Padmaja said at her brief press conference she quit with a heavy heart because she faced total neglect in the party.

Padmaja said she had approached her party high command, including Sonia Gandhi, whom she described as dear to her, with her grievances, but she was ignored by them all. She contested from Thrissur constituency, a Congress stronghold, in the 2021 assembly election, but she was defeated. She blamed her loss to subversion by her party colleagues.

Although she demanded action against those responsible, she said they were given important roles in the party, which made her think about her future in the party.

Padmaja told newspersons it was Congress which made her a BJP loyalist and praised the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

While she claimed she was joining BJP without any preconditions, it is understood that she has been offered either a candidature in the Lok Sabha election, probably from the Chalakudy constituency in Thrissur or a governorship.

She had apparently met BJP president JP Nadda and other senior leaders before heading for the party headquarters for her induction.

More Important People To Join BJP: Prakash Javadekar

Javadekar said more important people would join BJP in the coming days and Kerala will throw up surprises. Padmaja's decision has left the state Congress leaders in a lurch, struggling to reconcile with the loss. Her brother K Muraleedharan, who is expected to contest from Vadakara again, described her conduct as a great betrayal.

He said their father's soul would never approve of her decision as he was always steadfast in his opposition to communal elements. He claimed the party had given her more than what was due to her and that her joining BJP would do that party no good. The ruling CPI-M lost no time in berating Congress, saying a large number of people are waiting to catch the breadcrumbs offered by BJP.

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