The 22 Congress MLAs who joined the BJP in March last year did so to save Madhya Pradesh which was being "ruined" by the Kamal Nath government in place at the time, the latter's state unit chief VD Sharma said on Saturday.
The rebellion by 22 MLAs, many of them loyalists of Congressman-turned Rajya Sabha MP Jyotiraditya Scindia, led to the fall of the Nath government.
"The Congress leaders got wedded to the saffron culture and joined the BJP. They did so to save MP. During 15 months of Congress rule, the state was ruined," Mr Sharma told reporters on the sidelines of his party's two-day training session in Ujjain.
He said these legislators joined the BJP after being swayed by the public-centric welfare programmes of the party's governments in the state under Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan.
He said the public had endorsed these leaders, who had to face bypolls after quitting the MP Assembly, by voting for them.
Speaking at the two-day training session, Union minister Narendra Tomar asked legislators to ask their own questions in the Assembly rather than those given to them by others as "vested interests" may be involved which could lead to embarrassment for the party, one of those who attended claimed.
Mr Tomar asked those attending the camp to stay in touch with the public of their constituencies and give importance to party workers whose hard work was at the centre of poll wins, the functionary added.
The BJP's West Bengal in charge and senior MP BJP leader Kailash Vijaywargiya also addressed legislators on the last day of the training session.