Ballari: In another blow for the state Congress , its former MLA from Ballari City assembly constituency, Anil H Lad, who is s said to be upset at being 'sidelined' in the party, is all set to meet Chief Minister B.S. Yediyurappa and join the BJP on Monday.
Speaking to reporters here, Mr Lad confirmed that he had already spoken to Ballari BJP strongman and health minister, B Sriramulu about his plans to join the saffron party. "I will meet Chief Minister Yediyurappa on Monday and join the BJP in his presence," he said, adding that he was joining the BJP without any pre-conditions. Mr Lad has been giving mixed signals of late about where his loyalties lie. While he recently lambasted the BJP leadership for paying 'hefty amounts of money' to poach Congress and JD(S) legislators to topple the HDK government, in July he had come out in open support of disqualified Congress MLA B.S. Anand Singh. A former mining baron, Mr Lad has been charged with illegal ore trading by the CBI and is now out on bail. Indicating that he was on the way out of Congress, he recently posted a message on Ballari Congress leaders' social media group revealing that he was ‘thinking’ of joining BJP and asking for their views. While many of the Congress leaders disagreed with his decision to quit, Mr Lad is said to have responded, “What difference is there between BJP and Congress? They are different only in name. We are servants of the public and work is worship”. A cousin of ex-minister Santosh Lad, Mr Lad had contested from Ballari city thrice on Congress ticket. While he won the 2013 assembly poll, he lost the 2008 and 2018 polls. He was a Congress RS member from 2008 to 2013. But he began his political career with BJP, having been elected for the first time to the assembly from Kudligi in 2004. He later switched to the Congress due to differences with BJP’s Gali Janardhan Reddy.