India, July 16 -- The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Tuesday named Swatantra Dev Singh and Chandrakant Dada Patil as the presidents of its Uttar Pradesh and Maharashtra units, respectively.

Samajwadi Party leader Neeraj Shekhar, who quit as the party's Rajya Sabha member on Monday, also joined the BJP during the day. Son of former Prime Minister Chandra Shekhar, Neeraj Shekhar was purportedly upset with the SP president Akhilesh Yadav after he was denied ticket to contest the Lok Sabha election from Ballia, his family bastion.

Maharashtra public works minister Patil takes charge of the party ahead of the state assembly elections which are due in September-October this year.

Mangal Prabhat Lodha, BJP legislator from Malabar Hills, has ...