Vadodara, Oct 2 (UNI) Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) supremo Mayawati today appointed former minister and Narendra Modi-rebel Nalin Bhatt as general secretary of the Gujarat state unit of BSP aiming to woo the Brahmin votes in the coming assembly elections.
The Fifty eight-year-old Bhatt, along with a large number of his supporters, had joined the BSP in the presence of Uttar Pradesh chief minister Mayawati here on September 15 when the latter was on a two-day visit to Gujarat to address a couple of public rallies.
While accepting Mr Bhatt into her party fold, Mayawati had announced that BSP for the first time would put up candidates for all the 182 Gujarat Assembly seats without having any pre-poll alliance with other political parties.
Announcing Mr Bhatt's appointment as Gujarat BSP general secretary, state party co-ordinator Ram Pal Singh in a stattement here said, ''Mr Bhatt, who is a leader of the Brahm Samaj, will take the lead in the party to be victorious in the coming Assembly elections in Gujarat.'' Mr Bhatt was elected to the state assembly twice in 1980 and 1995, and served as cabinet minister during the tenure of former chief ministers Keshubhai Patel and Chimanbhai Patel.
In August, 2006, the former BJP minister, who sided with anti-Modi group headed by Keshubhai Patel, was suspended from the party for organising a road-show in Vadodara protesting against ''gross mismanagement in flood relief measures''.
Mr Bhatt however preferred to tender his resignation from the party alleging that there was no internal democracy in Gujarat BJP state unit and people had been cheated by the Modi government.
Later, in a statement Mr Bhatt said BSP which was regarded as ''Sarvajan'' party, would emerge as an alternative to the BJP and Congress in Gujarat.