NEW DELHI: The BJP on Monday inducted former National Conference leader Devendra Singh Rana with an eye to gain strength in Jammu and Kashmir amid the likelihood of the re-start of the legislative process in the Union Territory in the coming months.
Rana joined the BJP in the presence of Union Ministers Dharmendra Pradhan, Hardeep Singh Puri and Jeetendra Singh apart from senior leaders, including general secretaries Arun Singh and Tarun Chugh. Rana said he would ensure that those carrying out the separatist agenda will never succeed in J&K.
Former National Conference leader Surjeet Singh Salathia also joined the BJP along with Rana. Salathia had been a minister in the government in the erstwhile J&K state when the National Conference was in power.
Pradhan said that the BJP will be stronger with Rana in the party fold. “The decision of Rana and Salathia to join the BJP demonstrates the growing popularity of the BJP in J&K. The developmental works have gained pace in the union territory after the abrogation of Article 370,” he told reporters.
BJP’s J&K unit chief Ravindra Raina told reporters that the people of the Union Territory have distanced from the separatist politics and embraced the development agenda of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Meanwhile, the National Conference has got yet another jolt as over three dozen party activists, including a provincial secretary, two district presidents and two Jammu Municipal Corporation (JMC) corporators, resigned on Monday.