After quitting Congress, Priyanka Chaturvedi joins Shiv Sena on Friday. Earlier, Shiv Sena’s Rajya Sabha member Sanjay Raut told news agency ANI that, “Priyanka Chaturvedi will join Shiv Sena today.” Chaturvedi had quit Congress last night as she was miffed after the party reinstated some party workers in Uttar Pradesh who had threatened and misbehaved with her during a press conference in Mathura a few days ago. The party, which had suspended those workers, reinstated them on April 15.
Addressing a press conference with Sena chief Uddhav Thackeray, Chaturvedi said she left the Congress after being upset over reinstatement of party workers who misbehaved with her. “It is not true that I quit the Congress after being denied Lok Sabha ticket,” Chaturvedi said in response to a query. Welcoming her in the party fold, Thackeray said Shiv Sena workers have got a “good sister” in Chaturvedi.
“I have served the party (Congress) for 10 years in a selfless manner without asking for anything in return. But the party chose to ignore my complaints though the matter was taken up at the topmost level,” Chaturvedi said, addressing the media in Hindi. Chaturvedi said she had expressed her “pain” to the Congress leadership about the reinstatement of colleagues who misbehaved with her.
Though Chaturvedi admitted she was a bit disappointed at being overlooked for the Mathura Lok Sabha seat candidature, she insisted that the primary reason for quitting the Congress was the inaction against some activists who had misbehaved with her in the past. Mumbai-born and educated Chaturvedi described the city as “my ‘janmabhoomi’ and ‘karmabhoomi’, and the 53-year-old Shiv Sena as the ‘roar’ of Mumbai, Maharashtra and rest of the country”.
On his part, Thackeray said the party would soon identify her responsibilities in Shiv Sena keeping in view her background and experiences and inform the media. The announcement came within hours of her quitting the Congress in the midst of the Lok Sabha elections. Chaturvedi has been a prominent face of the Congress, articulating its viewpoint at press conferences and as a TV panelist
On April 17, she went public and expressed her resentment against the Congress high command. She had tweeted: “Deeply saddened that lumpen goons get preference in @incindia (Indian National Congress) over those who have given their sweat and blood. Having faced brickbats and abuse across the board for the party but yet those who threatened me within the party getting away with not even a rap on their knuckles is unfortunate.”
On April 18, she resigned from all posts and primary membership of the party. “In the last few weeks, certain things have convinced me that my services are not valued in the organization and that I have reached the end of the road. At the same time I also feel that more time I spend in the organization will be at the cost of my own self-respect and dignity,” Chaturvedi mentioned in her resignation letter.