In a major setback to Bharatiya Janata Party in Jammu and Kashmir, member parliament from Leh, Thupstan Chhewang Thursday resigned from the saffron party citing bad health.
"I am resigning from the primary membership of Bharatiya Janata Party on health grounds with immediate effects," Thustan Chhewang said in a handwritten letter to the party state president Ravinder Raina.
The veteran Ladakhi politician is also renouncing his seat in the parliament.
"I am also writing separately to Hon'ble Speaker Lok Sabha resigning from Ladakh Parliamentary constituency."
Chhewang had won the BJP its first ever parliamentary seat in Ladakh and also managed to secure a majority for the saffron party in the important Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council (LAHDC), Leh.
Chhewang's jolt to the BJP comes a just few months ahead of the next Lok Sabha elections.
Earlier, Dorjey Motup, Chief Executive Councillor (CEC) of Leh's LAHDC resigned from the post and the BJP.
Both top BJP leaders from Ladakh cited health reasons for their departure from the party.
But analysts describe the development as BJP's failure to grant Union Territory status to Ladakh and failure to fulfill other elections promises.
The resignations also came in the backdrop of the humiliating defeat of the BJP in Ladakh Autonomous Hill Development Council (LAHDC) of Kargil where after hectic campaign the saffron party managed only one seat.
Subsequently, the party drew a blank in Leh in the recently concluded Urban Local Bodies elections.