Shazia, Muslim leaders may join BJP

  • Neelam Pandey, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Jan 15, 2015 00:46 IST

In its attempt to ensure a clear majority in the coming Delhi Assembly polls and to counter the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), the state unit of the BJP is on an induction spree.

Shazia Ilmi, one of the founder members of AAP, is likely to join the party in the next few days, sources said.

Ilmi had quit the Aam Aadmi Party last year in May over lack of democracy in the party. She had also joined one of the major initiatives of the BJP — the Swachh Bharat Mission in October last year — and had even participated in the cleanliness drive.

Former AAP leader Vinod Binny, who was expelled from the party last year, is also likely to join the BJP, sources said.

A number of Muslim leaders associated with AAP are likely to join the party along with Ilmi.

Assembly speaker and former AAP MLA MS Dhir had joined the BJP recently inspired by the development work done by the Modi government.

Sources said that while ticket distribution was yet to be decided, Ilmi was likely to play a crucial role in BJP’s election campaign.

“Along with Ilmi, several other leaders and volunteers from the Muslim community are likely to join us. A formal announcement will be done soon. Her induction will strengthen the party’s connect with Muslim voters in the Capital. The party needs more Muslim women to join us and they will play a crucial role in the campaigning,” said a BJP leader. A senior BJP leader said Ilmi’s presence would help the BJP in countering the AAP. Recently, Ashwani Upadhyay and Sandeep Dubey from AAP had joined the BJP.

“It will help us in our campaign against AAP as they were with the party from the day it was born and they can highlight the loopholes of the party. It also gives a positive signal to the voters as we can highlight that even AAP’s members do not support them anymore,” said a senior BJP leader.

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