Firebrand anti-Modi politician joins India’s opposition Congress

Srinagar, India, Sep 28 (EFE).- India’s biggest opposition party received a shot in the arm on Tuesday when a firebrand former leftist politician joined the Indian National Congress.

Kanhaiya Kumar, an ex-Communist Party of India (CPI) leader who shot to fame during his student politics days, announced his decision to switch to the grand old party in the Indian capital.

Jignesh Mevani, an independent lawmaker from the marginalized Dalit community in Gujarat, was also present.

He said he also wanted to join the Congress but could not join “formally due to technical reasons.”

The two politicians are known for their fiery speeches against Prime Minister Narendra Modi, a Hindu nationalist who has faced opposition for his alleged divisive policies.

The Congress party, on the other hand, is struggling with a growing attrition rate.

Some famous and young Congress faces have switched to Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party or other regional outfits.

“I am joining the Congress because it is not just a party, it is an idea. It is the country’s oldest and most democratic party, and I am emphasizing on ‘democratic’,” Kumar, 34, told reporters.

“The Congress party is like a big ship. If it is saved, I believe many aspirations, Mahatma Gandhi’s oneness, Bhagat Singh’s courage, and BR Ambedkar’s idea of equality will be protected, too. This is why I have joined it,” he said, referring to iconic leaders of India’s freedom struggle.

The former leftist politician said a particular ideology was trying to “demolish India’s values, culture, history, and future,” ostensibly referring to the Hindu right-wing politics of the ruling party.

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