Former Punjab CM Amarinder Singh joins BJP

Former Punjab CM Amarinder Singh
Former Punjab CM Amarinder Singh

New Delhi: Former chief minister and Punjab Lok Congress chief Amarinder Singh joined the BJP here on Monday in the presence of senior BJP leaders Narinder Singh Tomar and Kiren Rijiju.

Singh (80) also merged his newly formed Punjab Lok Congress (PLC) with the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). 

Singh had floated the PLC last year after quitting the Congress following his unceremonious exit as chief minister, but his party failed to win any seat in the state assembly polls.

Singh himself lost from his home turf of Patiala Urban.

The PLC contested the elections in alliance with the BJP and the Sukhdev Singh Dhindsa-led Shiromani Akali Dal (Sanyukt).

Along with Singh, former deputy speaker of Punjab Assembly Ajaib Singh Bhatti also joined the BJP.

Sources said the former Punjab chief minister's son Raninder Singh and daughter Jai Inder Kaur will also join the saffron party along with him, besides some other leaders from the state.

Singh's wife Preneet Kaur is the Lok Sabha MP of the Congress from the Patiala seat.

The BJP is seeking to strengthen its base in Punjab through this merger.

Singh had recently returned from London following spinal surgery and met Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah.

After his meeting with Shah on September 12, Singh said he held a very productive discussion on various issues related to national security, rising cases of narco-terrorism in Punjab and the future roadmap for the state's overall holistic development.

The two-time former chief minister is the scion of the erstwhile Patiala royal family.

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