Uttarakhand polls: Harak Singh Rawat joins Congress
Uttarakhand assembly elections 2022: The politician, who was expelled by the state's ruling BJP on January 16, was inducted by former CM Harish Rawat in Delhi.
Harak Singh Rawat, who was expelled by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) joined the Congress on Friday, five days after his expulsion from Uttarakhand's ruling party. Rawat joined the Congress in Delhi, where he was inducted by Harish Rawat, a former chief minister of the hill state.
“When Congress wins with full majority on March 10, that will be my apology. The BJP thought of me as a 'use and throw'; I was very upset. I didn't break my friendship with home minister Amit Shah till the last moment, as I had promised,” the Kotdwar MLA said, according to news agency ANI.
In joining the Congress, Harak Singh Rawat returned to the party, which he left to join the BJP in 2017. A sitting minister in the Uttarakhand government, the politician was expelled by chief minister Pushkar Singh Dhami, who accused him of trying to join the Sonia Gandhi-led party.
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“He was given due respect till he was with us. The party decided to act against him after reports emerged that he will join the Congress. We've taken our call. Now, it's up to the Congress to take a decision,” Dhami said on Tuesday.
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In an interview with Hindustan Times after his expulsion, Harak Singh Rawat described as ‘overreaction’ the BJP's action against him, saying that joining the Congress ‘was not my plan.’
Harak Singh Rawat was among nine Congress lawmakers who rebelled against then chief minister Harish Rawat's government in March 2016, reducing it to a minority, and leading to the Centre imposing President's Rule in the state. However, Harish Rawat won a trust vote in May that year to return as CM.
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The recent developments took place ahead of assembly elections in Uttarakhand, which will be held in a single-phase on February 14. The counting of votes for all 70 assembly constituencies will take place on March 10.