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Congress' UP Chief Dubs Jitin Prasada 'betrayer' For BJP Switch, Mocks Electoral Relevance

Minutes after Jitin Prasada joined BJP in the presence of Union Minister Piyush Goyal, Uttar Pradesh Congress president Ajay Lallu dubbed him a "betrayer".

Image: ANI

Minutes after Jitin Prasada joined BJP in the presence of Union Commerce Minister Piyush Goyal, Uttar Pradesh Congress president Ajay Lallu dubbed him a "betrayer". Addressing a press conference on Wednesday, Lallu lamented that Prasada had jumped ship despite the party providing him multiple opportunities including his recent key West Bengal role. He said, "What Jitin Prasad did cannot be considered good work. Jitin Prasada has betrayed Congress today despite being given a lot of respect by Congress. I am saying with full confidence that he won't get success".

Questioning the political relevance of the ex-Union Minister in the 2022 UP Assembly polls, Lallu added, "He contested the Lok Sabha and Vidhan Sabha election. The entire state knows the relevance of a person who cannot win an election an Assembly and Lok Sabha election on his home turf. When you talk about his absence, there are many other dynamic and energetic youths who are ready to take the Congress party forward under the leadership of Priyanka Gandhi."

Speaking to the media after his induction, Prasada explained that he took this decision after a lot of deliberation considering the fact that three generations of his family have a connection with Congress. Justifying his move to leave the Sonia Gandhi-led party, he said that there was no point in staying in a party if a person cannot protect the interests of people. Moreover, he lauded the leadership of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and promised to work as a dedicated BJP member. 

Prasada's career and G23 upheaval

Born on November 29, 1973, Jitin Prasada was educated at the Shri Ram College of Commerce and also completed his MBA. Commencing his political career with the Indian Youth Congress in 2001, he won his first election three years later by winning the Shahajahanpur Lok Sabha seat. He also went to win in the 2009 Lok Sabha election- this time from Dhaurara. He served as MoS during the Manmohan Singh-led UPA tenure handling portfolios such as Steel, Petroleum & Natural Gas, Road Transport & Highways and Human Resource Development.

However, his career suffered a setback as he lost to BJP's Rekha Verma from Dhaurahra not just in 2014 but also in 2019 where he lost his deposit. He was one of the 23 Congress leaders wrote to Congress president Sonia Gandhi on August 23, 2020, making suggestions such as the need for a full-time leadership available at the national and state headquarters, conducting elections at all levels including the Congress Working Committee and state level, the formation of an Independent Election Authority, and institutional leadership mechanism to guide the party's revival. Following this, the UP Congress' Lakhimpur unit passed a resolution seeking strict action against all 23 signatories- singling out Prasada by name. 

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