Former Samajwadi Party leader and actor-turned-politician Jaya Prada joined the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Tuesday in New Delhi. She was inducted into the party by BJP General Secretary Bhupendra Yadav and Rajya Sabha MP Anil Baluni, and in the presence of other senior party leaders.
"This is a significant moment for me. Be it cinema or politics, I have worked with all my heart and dedicated my life to it. Thankful to the BJP for this respect," Jaya Prada told the media.
Jaya Prada is likely to be fielded from the Rampur Lok Sabha constituency which she represented in 2009 and 2014. On both occasions, she defeated Congress's Noor Bano from Rampur. The Samajwadi Party is fielding Azam Khan from the constituency.
Incidentally, it was Azam Khan who had gotten Jaya Prada to Rampur for her former party. The two leaders reportedly have a rivalry, which started after she shifted to the Amar Singh camp in SP.
In a recent attack on Azam Khan, Jaya had likened him to Alauddin Khilji from the Bollywood film Padmaavat, saying that the character reminded her of how Azam Khan had harassed her during the 2009 elections. She was referring to Azam Khan and his supporters allegedly circulating morphed nude photos of her on social media.
Jaya Prada, who is a Bollywood veteran, was previously in the Telugu Desam Party (TDP). She joined TDP in 1994 to enter politics.
Later she joined the Samajwadi Party but was expelled due to anti-party activities in 2010.
The former actor has worked in a number of south Indian films like Telugu, Kannada and Tamil and also in Bengali, Marathi and Hindi films. Jaya had also received several Filmfare South Awards, including a Lifetime Achievement award.