Former Trinamool Congress MP Dinesh Trivedi joined the BJP on Saturday, weeks after he announced he was quitting his Rajya Sabha membership on the floor of the House deploring "violence" in poll-bound West Bengal.
He joined the BJP in the presence of its president J.P. Nadda, and Union ministers Piyush Goyal and Dharmendra Pradhan besides other leaders.
Lauding Trivedi as a principled politician, Nadda said he was earlier a right person in the wrong party and was now in the right party.
Trivedi said he had been waiting for this "golden moment" and added that family is supreme in some parties but it is people who are supreme in the BJP.
He also praised the Narendra Modi government for its handling of the COVID-19 pandemic and the issues involving neighbouring countries.
A number of TMC leaders have quit the party in recent months to join the BJP as the saffron party mounts an aggressive all-out campaign to end Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee's 10-year-long reign in the state.
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Trivedi (70) was once a close confidant of TMC president Banerjee and was her choice for holding the important railway ministry portfolio in the Union Cabinet during the second term of the UPA government.
Though his ties with her strained resulting in him being removed from the Union cabinet, they later patched up. After losing the Lok Sabha election in 2019, he was sent to the Rajya Sabha by the party.
With the BJP being successful in wooing over a number of TMC leaders to its fold, the saffron party has said that this underscores an increasing unease in its rival camp and is a pointer to its "decisive" victory in the Assembly polls to be held in eight phases in West Bengal between March 27 and April 29.