Odisha Congress Working President Naba Kisore Das today resigned from the party to join the ruling Biju Janata Dal (BJD).
Mr Das, a sitting legislator from Jharsuguda Assembly constituency, resigned from the primary membership of the party and also as the state working president.
Mr Das sent his resignation letter to All India Congress Committee (AICC) President Rahul Gandhi.
He is likely to join the BJD on January 24, a day before the scheduled visit of Rahul Gandhi to the state.
"The people and voters of my area want that I contest the next election from BJD as they want our area to develop and that I should join hands with Chief Minister Naveen Patnaik," he wrote in his letter.
He said he will place all valuable suggestions of the people before the Chief Minister during his visit to Jharsuguda where Mr Patnaik will inaugurate a cancer hospital on January 24.
Mr Das had defeated BJD candidate and former Assembly Speaker Kishore Kumar Mohanty twice in the Jharsuguda constituency in the 2009 and 2014 elections.