RAIPUR: In a huge setback for the Congress party in the poll-bound Chhattisgarh, its state unit working president and a key tribal leader Ramdayal Uike has joined the ruling BJP.
Uike, a four-time MLA, joined the BJP in Bilaspur in presence of BJP president Amit Shah, Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh and BJP state president Dharamlal Kaushik on Saturday.
Congress Chhattisgarh working president and Pali-Tanakhar MLA, Ramdayal Uike joined BJP in presence of Amit Shah and CM Dr.Raman Singh pic.twitter.com/m2MuwrTraO
— ANI (@ANI) October 13, 2018
"I was feeling suffocated in Congress," Uike said during his interaction with the media later.
The Congress party, which is out of power in the mineral-rich state since 2003, has expressed shock over Uike`s decision.
Chhattisgarh Pradesh Congress President Bhupesh Baghel has termed it "shocking, disgusting and a classic example of the politics of opportunism".
It may be recalled that Uike was a BJP legislator from Marwahi seat in 2000 when the state was formed by splitting up Madhya Pradesh.
He later switched to Congress along with 11 other BJP legislators when Ajit Jogi was heading the Congress government in the state.
Uike had won from Korba district`s Pali-Tanakhar seat for the past three Assembly elections as a Congress candidate.
Reacting to the development, senior Congress leader PL Punia had said that Uike's exit will have no bearing on the party and its future poll prospects.