Former Congress spokesperson Priyanka Chaturvedi on Friday joined the Shiv Sena, blaming the Rahul Gandhi-led party for reinstating party workers who misbehaved with her recently.
At a press conference here, Chaturvedi was welcomed into the Sena by the saffron party president Uddhav Thackeray, who said Shiv Sena workers have got a “good sister” in Chaturvedi.
Earlier in the day, Chaturvedi, who was convenor of the Congress media cell, was miffed at the reinstatement of some party workers in Uttar Pradesh who had threatened and misbehaved with her during her press conference in Mathura a few days ago.
She told media at Thackeray’s residence in suburban Bandra that she was pained after some Congress workers, who had made comments against her, were reinstated by that party. Without naming the Congress, she said she gave 10 years to the party in which she thought she could speak for the cause of women, despite being trolled on the social media. “I kept speaking in a ‘bindaas’ (fearless) way despite being abused and trolled constantly,” she said. “I was pained when some party workers made comments about me. After being suspended, they were reinstated,” she added.
Chaturvedi said the statements made against her were ignored by the party (Congress), despite speaking for 10 years at a “great personal cost” and without joining politics formally.
“I was very let down. I thought if I didn’t fight for my self-respect, I would fail women. I have joined the Sena after a lot of thinking, and understanding my responsibility towards the cause of women,” she said.
She denied that she resigned from the Congress after being denied a ticket in the ongoing Lok Sabha polls. “Parties keep fighting elections. However, only fighting and winning is not life. The work of party workers should be to accept an ideology and work towards the cause,” Thackeray said.
Asked what post will Chaturvedi be given in the party, Thackeray said, “I will give her a post befitting her capabilities and one in which she would be beneficial for the Sena”.
Chaturvedi said she would work towards strengthening the Sena not only in Maharashtra, but across the country.
Asked why she joined the Sena and not the BJP, Chaturvedi said that as she hailed from Mumbai, her “karmabhoomi”, she always felt connected to the Sena. “If I have joined the party, it is only with a feeling to serve and not for political posts. I wanted to come back to my roots. When I thought of coming back, I did not find any organisation better than this and no other better platform than this,” she said.