New Delhi: One-time Congress heavyweight Jitin Prasada's exit from his old party and joining BJP has created quite a flutter in India's political circle.
On the one hand, it is being considered a severe blow to the Congress party, especially after another Congress' influential leader, Jyotiraditya Scindia, joined the BJP in March 2020. On the other, Congress leaders have come down heavily on Prasada.
Senior Congress leader Kapil Sibal tweeted, "The question is: Will he get "prasada" from BJP or is he just a 'catch' for UP elections? In such deals if 'ideology' doesn't matter, changeover is easy."
Sibal, however added that he is not "against" Prasada. He said, "I am not against what Jitin Prasada did as there must be some reason which hasn't been disclosed, but joining BJP is something I cannot understand. It shows we are moving from 'Aaya Ram Gaya Ram' to 'Prasada' politics, jahan prasad mile, you join that party."
He, however, agreed that the Congress party needs reforms and he will continue to raise the issues within the party. "I am sure leadership knows what the problems are and I hope the leadership listens because nothing survives without listening, no corporate structure can survive without listening and so is with politics. If you don't listen, you will fall into bad days," admitted Sibal.
However the veteran politician emphasised that he will never join the BJP as he has opposed the party's ideology.
Meanwhile, other Congress leaders have also criticised Prasada. Taking to Twitter, Congress leader Shashi Tharoor said, "Can politics be a career devoid of principle? Politics has to be about ideas, or it’s nothing. Can a person of conviction change political parties the way a cricketer changes IPL teams?"
Another leader, M Veerappa Moily said that Jitin Prasada did not have ideological commitment and party should look at this also before promoting such persons.
Prasada, after joining BJP on Wednesday, had said, "I feel there is no purpose of your doing politics or staying in a political party if a person is not able to serve or protect the interest of its people. I realized being in Congress and not being able to do the same. So, I joined BJP and my work will only speak for itself."
His father Jitendra Prasada was a prominent 'Brahmin' face in Uttar Prasad, who had challenged Sonia Gandhi's leadership in 1999 and had contested against her for the post of party chief. He died in 2002.
- With Agency inputs