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Gautam Gambhir joins BJP; Twitter comes up with mixed reactions

Speculation was on for some time about Gambhir joining the saffron party.

Gautam Gambhir
Gautam Gambhir. (Photo Source: Twitter)

Former India cricketer Gautam Gambhir never falls short of headlines. Hailing from Delhi, Gambhir quit the game almost three months ago during the Ranji Trophy and on Friday around noon, he officially joined the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in the presence of Union ministers Ravi Shankar Prasad and Arun Jaitley, a former president of Delhi & District Cricket Association. The 37-year-old said he has been influenced by the vision of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and considered the BJP a platform to do something for the country.

Speculation was on for some time about Gambhir joining the saffron party and the former cricketer eventually settled all doubts. According to sources, Gambhir may contest the upcoming Lok Sabha election starting April 11 from the prestigious New Delhi constituency. Currently, it is being held by the BJP’s Meenakshi Lekhi. Gambhir’s residence is at Rajinder Nagar which falls under New Delhi constituency.

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‘A significant induction’

Jaitley, who along with Prasad addressed a press conference during Gambhir’s joining, said: “It is a significant induction,” It was only on Thursday that the BJP announced its first list of 184 candidates for the general elections and more are expected soon. It will be interesting to see if Gambhir’s name also features in one of them.

Gambhir, who was recently conferred the Padma Shri by President Ram Nath Kovind, had campaigned for Jaitley in Amritsar, Punjab, during the 2014 Lok Sabha election. Jaitley though lost the contest to Punjab’s current chief minister, Captain Amarinder Singh.

The former left-handed batsman made debut for India in 2004 and played his last game for the country in 2016 which was a Test match against England. The former cricketer had also captained India impressively and was a member of two world cup-winning squads (T20I in 2007 and 50-over in 2011) and on both occasions, he played crucial knocks in the finals. Gambhir scored over 10,000 international runs and picked up 20 hundreds.

Gambhir is the latest former cricketer to join politics after the likes of Navjot Singh Sidhu, Mohammad Azharuddin, Kirti Azad, Chetan Chauhan, Mohammed Kaif and others.

His joining the BJP, however, earned a mixed reaction on Twitter.

Here are some of the reactions:

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