New Delhi: A day after media reports that he would be joining the BJP, Gujarat MLA and OBC leader Alpesh Thakor spoke out about his decision. (Also read: Thakor Couldn’t Handle Power Cong Gave Him, Alleges Hardik Patel)

Talking to ANI on Tuesday, Thakor said, “My people are poor & backward. They need the support of the government. I was disturbed that I couldn’t give that to my people what I had intended to. My organisation voiced their opinion that we need not be there where we don’t have respect and there’s no talk of their rights.”

On why he had left the Congress last month, Thakor said, “It was our decision and the voice of my conscience that we don’t want to be here. We want to work for our people and the poor with the help of the government. Wait and watch, more than 15 MLAs are leaving Congress, everyone is distressed. More than half of the MLAs are upset.”

What fuelled the reports of Thakor switching to the BJP was his meeting with Gujarat Deputy Chief Minister Nitin Patel on Monday.

Thakor had resigned from all party posts he held and while resigning, he had alleged that he was betrayed and discriminated against. Thakor, who also heads Thakor Sena, a community outfit, was Congress secretary in-charge of Bihar and was a member of all key committees of the Gujarat Congress for the Lok Sabha polls.

The Congress had also approached the Gujarat Assembly secretariat, seeking Thakor’s expulsion as a legislator for his “anti-party activities”.

However, this is not the first time that the possibility of Thakor joining the BJP has been discussed. Earlier this year, way before he officially quit the Congress, Thakor had had to explain that he was not shifting to the saffron party though he was upset with his party.

Thakor had joined the Congress before the 2017 assembly elections and had won from Radhanpur seat in Patan district.

However, his name cropped up following the violence against migrant workers in Gujarat last year. The violence started when a minor girl of the Thakor community was allegedly raped by a migrant labourer. Gujarat then saw the exodus of migrants from Hindi-speaking states after sporadic attacks on them.