Major setback to Cong in Haryana, Tanwar backs JJP

Tanwar, who was appointed the Haryana Congress chief in 2014, had been locked in a bitter feud with Mr Hooda.

New Delhi: Former Haryana Congress president Ashok Tanwar on Wednesday announced support for the Dushyant Chautala-led Jananayak Janta Party in the upcoming Assembly elections in the state.

Mr Tanwar, who had quit the Congress recently over serious differences with the central leadership, said his supporters wanted to see Mr Chautala as the chief minister of Haryana.

Mr Tanwar, who was once seen to be close to former Congress president Rahul Gandhi, also claimed that the party had ignored workers and refused to give tickets to genuine candidates because of “some arrogant people”.

“There are some arrogant people in the party whose hubris needs to be destroyed,” he said at a press conference here flanked by Mr Chautala.

He said that the move was a “surgical strike” on his former party the Congress.

Claiming that the Cong-ress was fighting for the third or fourth position in the Assembly elections to be held on October 21, “I have laid down the land mine for enemies and this is the first surgical strike on them”.

While quitting the Congress earlier, he had claimed that the party was selling tickets for the state polls. He had earlier accused former Haryana chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda and state party in-charge Ghulam Nabi Azad of hatching conspiracies.

Mr Tanwar, who was appointed the Haryana Congress chief in 2014, had been locked in a bitter feud with Mr Hooda.

After the disastrous performance in the Lok Sabha polls and resignation of Mr Gandhi, the proverbial old guard of the party took over with the appointment of Sonia Gandhi as interim president and placated Mr Hooda by removing Mr Tanwar and appointing Kumari Selja in his position.

Mr Hooda, a poweful Jat leader, had given indications of quitting the party had his wishes not been accomodated, the chief amongst which was the removal of Mr Tanwar.

His removal riled Mr Tanwar, a former Youth Congress President, who has been on the warpath since then.

Meanwhile, Congress Parliamentarian from Karnataka K.C. Rama-murthy on Wednesday tendered his resignation as a member of Rajya Sabha and is likely to join the BJP.

His resignation has been accepted by House Chairman M Venkaiah Nadu. Mr Ramamurthy is likely to join ruling BJP.

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