In a jolt, Gujarat AAP loses 2 key faces, one of them joins BJP
Ahmedabad, Jan 17 (PTI) In a setback to the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in Gujarat ahead of the Assembly polls, two prominent leaders - Vijay Suvada and Mahesh Savani - deserted the Arvind Kejriwal-led outfit within a span of 24 hours and one of them joined the ruling BJP on Monday.
Suvada, a popular folk singer who resigned from the AAP membership on Sunday, joined the ruling BJP in the presence of its state unit chief CR Paatil in Gandhinagar a day later, saying he has "returned home".
Hours after Suvada's switchover, another Gujarat AAP leader, Mahesh Savani, a Surat-based businessman and philanthropist, left the party claiming he is unable to focus on his business and social service activities due to his political commitments.
Both Suvada and Savani had joined Arvind Kejriwal's party in June last year.
After welcoming Suvada in the BJP fold, Paatil said the folk singer had joined the AAP out of some "misconception".
"This is a ghar-wapsi or homecoming for Vijay Suvada. Out of some misconception, he had decided to join that party (AAP). When he came to terms with the reality, he sent a proposal to come back, which we accepted," said Paatil.
Suvada said he needs a party with strong organisation like the BJP to serve the people well.
"I have returned home. My family has been BJP supporters for three generations. CR Paatil considers me as his son. I need a strong organisation to serve the people in a better way. And, everyone knows that BJP has the best party organisation on the ground," Suvada told reporters.
Savani said he has decided to focus on social service and will stay away from politics as of now.
"I had joined the AAP thinking that it would help me in expanding my social activities. But, it actually proved counter productive as I was not able to focus on my business or social activities due to political commitments. Even my family and well-wishers told me that politics is not my cup of tea and requested me to leave it," Savani told reporters in Surat.
Notably, Savani, who is into diamond and real estate businesses, is known for adopting orphan girls of all faiths and arranging their lavish mass weddings.
"As of now, I will stay away from politics. I have not thought of joining any other party as of now. I will join a party which believes in serving the people. The BJP is in power. But, I am not ambitious about having any post or becoming a minister. I will remain attached to social service," he said.
Assembly polls in Gujarat are due by end-2022.
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