Padmaja Venugopal, daughter of former Kerala CM Karunakaran, set to join BJP today. Who is she? – India TV

Padmaja Venugopal
Image Source : FILE PHOTO Congress leader and daughter of the late Kerala Chief Minister K Karunakaran Padmaja Venugopal.

Amid swirling speculations, Padmaja Venugopal, the daughter of late Congress stalwart K Karunakaran, is reportedly set to join the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Thursday. The rumors gained traction after Venugopal deleted a Facebook post initially dismissing reports of her defection. Venugopal, who is currently serving as a leader within the Congress ranks, is anticipated to make the switch.

Facebook post deletion fuels speculations

Initially, Venugopal downplayed the reports of her potential move to the BJP, labeling them as a mere joke on Facebook, according to a PTI report. However, her subsequent deletion of the post intensified speculations, hinting at a possible departure from the Congress.

Who is Padmaja Venugopal?

At 64, Padmaja Venugopal serves as the general secretary of the Congress’ Kerala unit. Despite her political lineage, she faced electoral setbacks, notably losing in the last two state assembly elections from the Thrissur constituency. Her electoral misfortunes also extended to the national level, as she failed to secure victory in the 2004 Lok Sabha elections from the Mukundapuram constituency. Reports suggest that Venugopal felt marginalized by the Congress leadership, leading to her decision to switch sides.

Rift with Congress leadership

Tensions between Venugopal and the Congress leadership came to a head when she was allegedly barred from joining Congress national General Secretary Priyanka Gandhi’s vehicle during an election campaign rally. Her brother, K Muraleedharan, a Congress Lok Sabha MP, publicly severed ties with her during a press conference in Kerala’s Kozhikode, further exacerbating the family rift. Muraleedharan criticised Venugopal’s absence from political activities and questioned her commitment to the party. He underscored the disappointment felt by their late father, Karunakaran, over her purported disloyalty to the Congress.


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