Former foreign minister in the UPA government and forme Congress heavyweight S.M. Krishna joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) today in the presence of the party president Amit Shah.
Krishna is one of the tallest leaders from the Congress party to switch to another political camp. A trusted aide of both Indira and Rajiv Gandhi, Krishna served as the Karnataka Chief Minister from 1999 to 2004.
He later became the Governor of the state before becoming the External Affairs Minister.
Krishna was welcomed to the BJP at a ceremony held at the party headquarters in New Delhi.
“It has been a great journey in politics and I have arrived at a very important stop in my onward journey,” Krishna said at the program.
Former Foreign Minister SM Krishna joins BJP pic.twitter.com/spM3fceBIF
— ANI (@ANI_news) March 22, 2017
He then praised Prime Minister Narendra Modi and said that it was because of the leadership of the PM and the party president that he joined the BJP.
“I am deeply humbled that I am joining a political party which has given lot to the country,” he said, adding that he has”taken the country to greater heights.”
Miffed with the party leadership, Krishna had resigned from the Congress in January this year. At the time, the 84-year-old brutally criticized the Congress for sidelining “time-tested leaders and workers” such as himself and depending more on “situation managers”.
Krishna’s arrival in the BJP camp boosts its chances in the Karnataka Assembly Elections scheduled to be held next year.
The move is sure to deal a major blow to Chief Minister K Siddaramaiah and the Congress in the state. Whether or not it alters the political equation is yet to be seen but BJP’s Karnataka chief B.S. Yeddyurappa will remain the party’s CM face.
SM Krishna to join BJP today. On the battlefield it doesn’t matter if Krishna doesn’t pick up a weapon, it matters which side he picks #gyan
— Smita Prakash (@smitaprakash) March 22, 2017
The political stalwart would have joined BJP earlier but the death of his sister delayed the process.