In a jolt to the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) in Uttar Pradesh on Thursday, senior leaders Tribhuvan Ram and Vinod Singh have joined BJP in Uttar Pradesh. Tribhuvan Ram is a close aid of BDP chief Mayawati while Vinod Singh was a former minister in the BSP government.

Vinod Singh is the son of late Congress leader KN Singh, belongs to Sultanpur.

Tribhuvan Ram is the engineer-turned-politician who was the head of the PWD department during the Mayawati regime. Ram was also in charge of the Dalit memorials and parks that were constructed in Lucknow and Noida.

While speaking to the media, Ram said that the BSP was fast losing its relevance because of its casteist approach. “Dalit icon B.R. Ambedkar and BSP founder Kanshi Ram used to say that a party can help the poor and downtrodden only when it is in power. The BSP did not follow this when it was in power,” he added.

Tribhuvan got an extension twice as the PWD engineer during the BSP government.

The two rebel BSP leaders said that they were impressed with the pro-poor policies of the Narendra Modi government at the centre and Yogi Adityanath’s administration in the state.

The Uttar Pradesh BJP chief Swatantra Dev Singh welcomed the two leaders and said that they will strengthen the party and take it forward. “We hope that they would continue to work for the poor and downtrodden,” he added.