Fondly known as ‘Bapu’, the senior Gujarat politician had left Congress ahead of the 2017 Gujarat assembly election and floated his own outfit but failed to make any mark. The former Chief Minister along with rebel Congress lawmakers had backed BJP’s Balwantsinh Rajput against Congress heavyweight Ahmed Patel in the Rajya Sabha polls.
Once a close aide of PM Narendra Modi, Vaghela was instrumental in strengthening BJP’s political presence but later snapped ties with the ruling party. After parting ways with BJP, Vaghela joined Congress and won successive Lok Sabha Polls in 1999 and 2004.
In 2004, Vaghela was inducted into Manmohan Singh’s Cabinet with the portfolio of Textiles. In 2012, Congress appointed Vaghela as the head of Congress unit but witnessed humiliating defeat against BJP's Narendra Modi.