Ex-Odisha CM Giridhar Gamang quits BJP, to join KCR’s BRS

NewsDrum Desk
25 Jan 2023

(Eds: Adds details) Bhubaneswar, Jan 25 (PTI) Former Odisha chief minister and nine-term Lok Sabha MP from tribal-dominated Koraput seat, Giridhar Gamang, on Wednesday resigned from the BJP, alleging that he faced “humiliation” in the saffron party.

Gamang will join K Chandrasekhar Rao’s Bharat Rashtra Samithi (BRS), his son Sishir Gamang, who also quit the saffron party along with his father, said.

However, the date of joining the BRS was yet to be decided, he said.

“I can tolerate insult, but not humiliation. Moreover, I was overlooked in the party,” Gamang told reporters here, adding that he was quitting the party with a heavy heart.

The veteran tribal leader, however, thanked Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Home Minister Amit Shah for their support.

Sishir alleged that his father was not given adequate importance in the state unit of the BJP.

Gamang was elected to Lok Sabha from Koraput Lok Sabha seat from 1972 to 1998 and again in 2004.

He could not contest the 1999 polls as he was the Odisha chief minister then. His wife Hema Gamang had won the seat that year.

Gamang said he sent his resignation to BJP national president J P Nadda.

He had quit the Congress and joined the BJP in 2015.

In the letter to Nadda, Gamang said: “As you are aware, I joined the BJP voluntarily, at my free will, without any pre-condition in 2015. I am thankful to Shri Narendra Modi, Hon’ble Prime Minister and Shri Amit Shah, Home Minister, the then President of the Party for clarifying on the floor of the Parliament on my Voting in 1999.” “However, I realised that I am unable to discharge my political, social and moral duty to my people in Odisha during the last several years. Hence, I tender my resignation from the primary membership of the BJP with immediate effect. Please accept the same,” the letter read.

Gamang and his son had also skipped the BJP's state executive meeting held here on Sunday.

Reacting to the development, BJP state president Samir Mohanty said, “He (Gamang) is a respected politician. He was never humiliated in the party. He was a member of the state executive as well as the highest core committee of the party. He had extensively campaigned for four days in Padampur bypoll. However, he is free to choose any party of his choice.” Senior BJP leader Dilip Mohanty said Gamang’s resignation will not affect the party’s electoral prospect.

Gamang and his son had met Telangana Chief Minister K Chandrasekhar Rao on January 13.

Gamang may lead the party in Odisha in the 2024 elections as its state president, sources said. PTI AAM ACD ACD

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