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HindustanTimes Fri,19 Sep 2014

Birender Singh to meet supporters before deciding on next step

PTI  Chandigarh, July 31, 2014
First Published: 16:07 IST(31/7/2014) | Last Updated: 16:14 IST(31/7/2014)

Amid reports that he may switch over to BJP, senior Haryana Congress leader Birender Singh, who has openly revolted against chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda, said he would meet his supporters on Thursday before deciding on his next step.

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With rumours doing the rounds that he is all set to join BJP in the light of his meeting with the saffron party chief Amit Shah in Delhi two days ago, Singh, a known detractor of Hooda, however, preferred to keep cards close to his chest.

"I met Amit Shah and we had a long meeting. Since Haryana goes to polls soon, we talked on a number of issues concerning the state's politics. This was my first meeting and I had not gone to meet him to say that I am leaving my party to join the BJP," Singh said.

Singh, a former Haryana minister, lost the 2009 assembly polls to former chief minister Om Prakash Chautala from Uchana Kalan segment.

Asked to comment on reports that he might join BJP, Singh said, "When the time comes to decide, only then can I answer.
I am having a meeting with supporters (at hometown Uchana today) and I will take their feedback on future step after which I will take a decision. Whatever they say, I will do accordingly."

Singh has openly revolted against chief minister Hooda and refused to contest the October assembly polls under his leadership. Accusing Hooda of practising regional bias in carrying out development works, he said that he had asked his party to change the chief minister "because his continuance is damaging the party."  

"He (Hooda) has weakened the Congress and I don't know how the party will overcome and deal with the damage that has been caused. After the Lok Sabha poll debacle, I had said that Hooda should step down on moral grounds and demanded that he should be changed. Though it is quite late, Hooda should forthwith leave the chief minister's post because there is growing resentment and disillusionment among Congress rank and file," he said.

Despite being a cousin of Hooda, Birender does not like to mix relation with politics.

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