Politics

Former AAP Minister, Chhatarpur MLA, Joins BJP in Delhi Months Before Assembly Elections

Anand, a prominent Dalit leader, expressed his reasons for leaving AAP, emphasizing that the party had deviated from its original mission to combat corruption.

Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Chhatarpur MLA Kartar Singh Tanwar and former Delhi minister Raaj Kumar Anand have officially joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). The induction took place in the national capital, with the presence of BJP’s Delhi president, Virendra Sachdeva, and national general secretary, Arun Singh.

Anand, who previously held the position of MLA from the Patel Nagar constituency, made the switch to the BJP alongside his wife, Veena Anand, who is also a former legislator. His decision to leave AAP was driven by concerns over corruption within the party, particularly following the arrest of AAP’s convener in an excise-related case.

Before joining the BJP, Anand briefly aligned with the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and announced his intention to contest the Lok Sabha elections from the New Delhi constituency. His resignation from the AAP marked the first such instance within the Arvind Kejriwal-led government after the Delhi Chief Minister’s arrest in March 2024.

Chhatarpur MLA
Image Source: Flipkart

Anand, a prominent Dalit leader, expressed his reasons for leaving AAP, emphasizing that the party had deviated from its original mission to combat corruption. He criticized the lack of Dalit representation among the party’s top leadership. Additionally, Anand took a pointed swipe at Arvind Kejriwal, who remains in Tihar jail, facing judicial custody in a money laundering case linked to excise policies. Anand remarked, “While Kejriwal once promised transformative politics, the reality hasn’t matched the rhetoric.”

In the 2020 Delhi Assembly Election, Anand secured victory from the Patel Nagar seat, defeating BJP’s Pravesh Ratn by a substantial margin of over 30,000 votes. His subsequent appointment as a Delhi Cabinet minister in November 2022 saw him overseeing various portfolios, including Social Welfare, Labour and Employment, SC and ST affairs, Land and Building, and Gurudwara Elections.

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Dr. Shubhangi Jha

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