Dehradun: Senior BJP leader Bhuwan Chandra Khanduri’s son Manish Khanduri joined the Congress on Saturday at a rally here in the presence of party president Rahul Gandhi. Welcoming the veteran Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) leader’s son, Gandhi said him joining the Congress will strengthen the party. Speculation is rife that the Congress might field Manish Khanduri from Pauri, a Lok Sabha seat held by his father.
Former Uttarakhand chief minister B C Khanduri was removed last year as chairman of the parliamentary standing committee on defence. The Congress had latched on to the removal of the former army general from the committee to attack the BJP.
At the rally, Rahul asked the audience why the son of a man who had served the armed forces and the BJP for years joined hands with the Congress. “Why is Manish Khanduri here? Do you know his father Khanduri ji was the chairman of the parliamentary committee on defence,” he said. “Despite dedicating his life to the army, the patriot was unceremoniously removed from the panel as he voiced his concern about the country’s defence preparedness,” the Gandhi scion added.