RISHI Sunak reportedly masterminded Lisa Cameron’s defection from the SNP to the Tories, according to Alister Jack.

We told how the East Kilbride, Strathaven and Lesmahagow MP, who has held the seat since 2015, claimed she had been ostracised from the SNP Westminster group over her support for the harassment victim of MP Patrick Grady.

Cameron alleged she had experienced a “toxic and bullying” SNP Westminster group as she announced her move to the Tories, the first ever by an SNP MP.

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And now, the Scottish Secretary has claimed that the Prime Minister “handled the whole thing directly”.

It has also been reported that a small group of senior Tories orchestrated the defection – and Scottish Tory leader Douglas Ross had been kept out of the loop.

According to The Telegraph, only Liam Booth-Smith, Sunak’s chief of staff, James Forsyth, the Prime Minister’s political secretary, and Jack (below), knew about the defection.

Not even Ross, the party’s supposed leader north of the Border, or any other senior Scottish Tory, was informed of the defection.

“The Prime Minister is entirely responsible for Ms Cameron’s decision to come over to the Conservatives,” Jack told the Telegraph.

“He handled the whole thing directly, himself. I promise you that.”

The National: Alister Jack

However, it came on the day Cameron was widely expected to lose a selection contest in her local SNP branch to competitor Grant Costello.

Costello was confirmed as the party’s candidate for the upcoming General Election on Thursday afternoon.

Cameron had previously threatened to quit the party and trigger a by-election if her selection bid was unsuccessful.

Sunak reportedly heard of Cameron’s issues with the SNP group from some of the six Scottish Tory MPs in the Commons, with the pair said to have “reached out to each other”, leading to at least one meeting between them both.

“Myself and my colleagues had been kind to Lisa over her problems, but nobody expected this,” Jack added.

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“It’s incredible, it never leaked and nobody saw this coming until it happened. The responsibility is entirely the Prime Minister’s.”

We told how Sunak and Ross both said they were “delighted” by Cameron’s decision to join their party.

“She is a brave and committed constituency MP,” the Prime Minister said in a statement on Thursday.

“Lisa is right that we should aim to do politics better, with more empathy and less division and a dedication to always doing what we think is right.

The National: MP Lisa Cameron defected from the SNP to the Conservatives

“I look forward to working with her on disability issues she has championed so passionately in Parliament, and on the issues that really matter to her constituents in East Kilbride, Strathaven and Lesmahagow.”

Cameron also praised Sunak’s leadership in a lengthy statement announcing her defection.

"I am particularly grateful to the Prime Minister in valuing my continued contribution to Parliament as a health professional and in taking time to listen,” she said.

READ MORE: Lisa Cameron's East Kilbride constituents react to SNP-Tory defection

“It is the first time I have felt heard and shows positive, inclusive leadership in contrast to that which I have encountered in the SNP at Westminster over many years."

We told how the SNP called on Cameron to stand down and trigger a by-election.

Meanwhile, the First Minister said he believed she probably never “believed in the cause” of independence “in the first place”.