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SAD leader Kahlon joins BJP, hits out at top party leaders for turning it into 'limited company'

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Chandigarh, May 16 (PTI) Shiromani Akali Dal leader Ravikaran Singh Kahlon on Thursday joined the BJP here, a day after he was expelled from the SAD over alleged anti-party activities.

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Welcomed into the party fold by Punjab BJP chief Sunil Jakhar and party leader Manjinder Singh Sirsa, Kahlon said the SAD had turned into a "limited company" -- indirectly referring to control over the party by a few leaders.

Kahlon is the son of former Punjab Assembly Speaker and former rural development and Panchayat Minister Nirmal Singh Kahlon. Kahlon had unsuccessfully contested the 2022 Punjab assembly polls from the Dera Baba Nanak seat. He had also been appointed as the chairman of the Punjab Tubewell Corporation.

Addressing the media here, Kahlon took a swipe at SAD chief Sukhbir Badal, saying he was thankful to him for throwing him out of the party "for speaking the truth" and rejected any charge of any indiscipline.

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Claiming the SAD was now a "limited company, Kahlon said SAD chief Sukhbir Badal is just a "rubber stamp" while party leader Bikram Singh Majithia calls the shots and is responsible for its "collapse".

The SAD's situation has gone from bad to worse, he said, adding that whoever speaks about the party's welfare is "either shown the door or his voice is suppressed".

Kahlon lashed out at senior Akali leader Majithia, accusing him of "destroying" the political career of many senior party leaders.

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He also alleged that Majithia did not want him to contest from the Fatehgarh Churian assembly seat during the 2022 Punjab assembly polls, due to which he was asked to fight from the Dera Baba Nanak seat, which he lost by a small margin.

SAD president Badal on Wednesday had expelled Kahlon from primary membership of the party for "anti-party" activities and "betraying" the party.

At the event in which Kahlon joined BJP, party leader Jakhar said the exodus of such leaders from other parties to the saffron fold highlights the palpable undercurrent in favour of the BJP in Punjab. PTI CHS SKY SKY

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