Three more Congress leaders, including former deputy speaker Gulam Hyder Malik, announced their resignation from the party on Monday in support of veteran politician Ghulam Nabi Azad.
Azad, 73, a former chief minister of Jammu and Kashmir, ended his five-decade association with the Congress on Friday, terming the party comprehensively destroyed and lashing out at Rahul Gandhi for demolishing its entire consultative mechanism.
Malik, a former MLA from Kathua’s Bani assembly constituency, and two former MLCs – Subash Gupta from Kathua and Sham Lal Bhagat from Doda separately forwarded their resignation letters to the party high command.
We have received the letters (of support) from Malik, Gupta and Bhagat, Azad’s close aide and former minister G M Saroori said.
Former deputy chief minister Tara Chand, former ministers Abdul Majid Wani, Manohal Lal Sharma and Gharu Ram and former MLA Balwan Singh also met Azad in Delhi and are likely to announce their loyalty to him on Tuesday after resigning from the Congress, a source said.
Over a dozen prominent Congress leaders, including former ministers and legislators, besides hundreds of Panchayati Raj Institution (PRI) members, municipal corporators and district and block level leaders have already left the Congress to join Azad, who will soon launch a national-level party from Jammu and Kashmir.—GK