Soon after the BJP suffered a jolt of sorts with cricketer-turned-politician Navjot Singh Sidhu joining the Congress, it's time for the saffron party to return the favours . Reports have said that political veteran ND Tiwari, the last Congress chief minister of UP, is expected to join the saffron party along with his son, as is Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Kumar Vishwas.
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NDT in NDA?
Narayan Dutt Tiwari, 91, has had a chequered political career. In 2009, Tiwari, the governor of Andhra Pradesh then, was seen in bed with three women at his official residence, thanks to a sting operation by a Telugu news channel. The scandal cut his gubernatorial stint short.
Then, a man named Rohit accused him of being his biological father. After paternity tests proved this, Tiwari married Rohit's mother Ujjwala in 2014 and gave his son his surname. Rohit is also expected to join the BJP with his father.
The big question, though, is what the BJP stands to gain by welcoming the nonagenarian leader into the party fold. The only reason that comes to mind is the clout he holds in Uttarakhand, where Assembly elections are less than a month away. Tiwari had served as the chief minister of Uttarakhand in 2002-2007. Tiwari has been a Congress member for the most of his life and it remains to be seen how much his presence will boost the prospects of the BJP and the NDA.
Also, one might question Tiwari's joining the BJP at a time when the party has been speaking in favour of young leaders and sidelined a number of veterans in the last few years.
Kumar Vishwas also to join BJP?
According to an Economic Times report, AAP leader Kumar Vishwas is also expected to join the BJP soon, and is currently in talks with the party. He apparently wants to contest the UP Assembly elections from Sahibabad.
Vishwas leaving the AAP could be a big blow for the party led by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal, and this could be the only advantage the BJP can look forward to from this defection. The poet-cum-politician had been one of AAP's prominent faces in the past but has not been in the limelight of late. Reports have also hinted at possible rift between the leader and the party though the latter has denied it.