New Delhi: Ahead of Delhi Assembly elections, BJP on Tuesday received a substantial gain as Arvinder Singh Lovely, son of former Union Home Minister and senior one-time Congress leader Buta Singh, joined the party.
Apart from Mr Lovely, a number of other leaders from Congress, Aam Aadmi Party also joined the saffron party during the day.
BJP claimed that Mr Lovely's inclusion will help it increase the support of Dalit voters and AAP, which is said to have a stronghold within SC community, can be given a tough fight in the forthcoming assembly polls.
"I was very disappointed as my father was denied a ticket by Congress in the General elections following which he had to contest elections independently in Rajasthan. So, I have today joined the BJP. I will assist the party to win the upcoming assembly elections," Mr Lovely told reporters in New Delhi.
Mr Lovely had successfully contested the 2008 Assembly elections on Congress ticket from Deoli, but was defeated by AAP leader Mr Prakash in last Assembly elections. He is hoping to translate his father's image as a veteran SC leader into votes.
Sources in the BJP said that party would field Mr Lovely from Deoli as it does not have a prominent face from that seat.
Mr Lovely's father Buta Singh, who served as the Union agriculture minister in the Rajiv Gandhi cabinet at the Centre between 1984 and 1986, was elected to Lok Sabha eight times between 1962 and 2004. He was the home minister between 1986 and 1989.
According to the BJP, Mr Lovely has worked within the SC community and with this, he will strengthen the party.
"I was impressed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi under whose leadership country is progressing well," Mr Lovely said.
"With the joining of Lovely, it will definitely strengthen the party in the forthcoming polls. We are very confident that BJP will form a government with full majority," Delhi BJP chief Satish Upadhyay said.
Two AAP leaders Sandeep Dubey, an advocate and engineer Chandrakant Tyagi also joined the saffron party.
Apart from that, BJP claimed that Rashtriya Lokdal's councilor Anita Tyagi (Chhatarpur), former Congress councilor Deepak Choudhary, DPCC's secretary Shashikant Diskhit, Congress leader Gopal Pahariya were among the leaders who joined the BJP.
Attacking Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party, Sandeep Dubey said that the voice of common man is not heard in AAP that's why he has joined BJP.