BJP State Minister Yashpal Arya Joins Congress in Uttarakhand Ahead of State Polls
11:13 GMT 11.10.2021 (Updated: 10:39 GMT 19.07.2022)
The decision of the senior politician and his lawmaker son to quit the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) with the state elections looming ever nearer - they are due to be held early in 2022 - has dealt a serious blow to Uttarakhand's ruling party.
Yashpal Arya, transport minister in the BJP-led Uttarakhand government, joined the opposition Congress party along with his legislator son Sanjeev Arya on Monday in New Delhi.
Yashpal Arya is a prominent Dalit leader in the state.
The Congress party announced at a press conference that Yashpal Arya would leave the BJP.
"[Yashpal] has just tendered his resignation from the post of Uttarakhand Cabinet Minister," Congress politician Randeep Singh Surjewala told the assembled media.
In 2017, Yashpal Arya joined certain prominent politicians in Uttarakhand - including former state chief Vijay Bahuguna and former ministers Harak Singh Rawat and Satpal Maharaj - in quitting Congress for the BJP.
However, after his latest transition, he said: “This is my homecoming.”
"The BJP also tried to change his mind. In fact, Dhami himself went to Arya's residence for a breakfast meeting on 25 September amid reports of his unhappiness," the daily reported.