Bengaluru: Former Congress leader S P Muddahanumegowda, actor-turned politician Shashi Kumar and retired IAS officer Anil Kumar B H on Thursday joined the ruling BJP in Karnataka where elections are due in about five months.
They were admitted into the party at its state headquarters here in the presence of Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai, and state BJP President Nalin Kumar Kateel..
Muddahanumegowda, a senior leader and former Member of Parliament from Tumakuru, had announced his decision to quit the Congress in September.
He was the only Congress’ sitting MP during 2019 Lok Sabha polls to be denied a ticket, as the party had ceded the Tumakuru seat to its then alliance partner in the state, the JD(S).
JD(S) patriarch and former Prime Minister H D Deve Gowda was the joint nominee of Congress-JD(S) alliance from Tumakuru. Angered by this decision, Muddahanumegowda had filed his papers both as a party candidate and as an independent, but had finally yielded to persuasion by the party leadership.
Muddahanumegowda has already expressed his intention to contest the Assembly polls from Kunigal seat.
Shashi Kumar, a Kannada film actor, had been associated with both Congress and JD(S) in the past.
He was a member of the 13th Lok Sabha, winning from Chitradurga in 1999 on a Janata Dal (United) ticket, and had unsuccessfully contested 2018 Assembly polls from Hosadurga on a JD(S) ticket.
Anil Kumar had held the position of additional chief secretary at the time of his retirement in July.
According to sources, Kumar, who belongs to the SC ‘left’ community, is expecting a ticket from the Koratagere Assembly constituency in Tumakuru district, currently represented by Congress veteran and former Deputy Chief Minister G Parameshwara, and has already held several rounds of meetings with his supporters there.