Bhopal, July 12 : Hours after joining the BJP, former Congress MLA Pradyuman Singh Lodhi has been made the chairman of the Civil Supplies Corporation. He will hold the rank of a cabinet minister.

The pro tem speaker accepted his resignation as Congress MLA on Sunday and the Bada Malahara seat was declared vacant. Pradyuman Singh joined the BJP on Sunday.

Former Chief Minister Uma Bharti, a Lodhi leader, represented Bada Malahara when she led the party to victory in 2003. Ten days ago, Uma Bharti had raised questions about the regional and caste imbalance in the expanded ministry.

The elevation of Pradyuman Singh brings back Bharti as another power centre in the state. Pradyuman Singh's family has been associated with the RSS since the beginning. He had quit BJP before the last assembly elections in 2018.

Pradyuman Singh, who met Bharti at around noon, later met Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and state BJP chief V.D. Sharma, before being formally admitted to the BJP. This will take the number of vacant constituencies to 25.

Pradyuman's departure is a big jolt to Kamal Nath and Congress just when the party was preparing to claw back through by-elections.

Congress MLA from Damoh Legislative Assembly Rahul Singh reacted after his cousin Pradyuman Singh Lodhi joined the BJP. He said that the Congress has empowered him and he will always remain loyal to the party.

Singh said Pradyuman gave him no hint about his impending defection. Pradyuman Singh always said that he would support the Congress. Rahul Singh said he has also received many offers to join the new ruling party.

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