Bhopal: It was Shubhangini Raje Gaekwad, member of the former royal family of Baroda, who apparently became the bridge between the top BJP leadership and Jyotiraditya Scindia in the run-up to his exit from the Congress, sources said on Tuesday.
Scindia’s wife Priyadarshni comes from the Gaekwad family.
On Tuesday, Scindia announced that he had resigned from the Congress amid a flurry of resignations by party MLAs and ministers belonging to his camp in Madhya Pradesh, bringing the Kamal Nath government to the brink of collapse.
Sources close to Scindia family, former royals of Gwalior, said after he was `cold-shouldered’ by Congress president Sonia Gandhi and her son Rahul, Jyotiraditya began to explore his options beyond the party.
“Jyotiraditya’s wife Priyadarshni belongs to the Gaekwad royal family. And Prime Minister Narendra Modi has a lot of respect for the Baroda Maharani (Shubhangini Raje),” sources said.
Shubhangini Raje had acted as a proposer when Modi filed nomination for the Lok Sabha polls from Vadodara (formerly Baroda) in 2014.
She facilitated communication between Scindia and the prime minister, sources claimed.
Speculation is rife that Scindia, a former Union minister, would join the BJP.
Scindia had tried to meet Sonia Gandhi on Sunday but the Congress president did not meet him, sources claimed.
Congress leader Rahul Gandhi too could not provide any solace to Scindia who was locked in a turf battle with Madhya Pradesh chief minister Kamal Nath, the sources added.