Leader tells Rahul Gandhi Congress has become ‘private limited company’, expelled
The Congress on Tuesday expelled its state spokesperson Vikas Srivastava and suspended the membership of MLC Dinesh Pratap Singh for “indiscipline” and “misbehaviour”. While Srivastava faced action for writing to Congress vice-president Rahul Gandhi that the party had “deviated from the democratic system and turned into a private limited company”, Singh had claimed that either he would remain in the party or K L Sharma — a representative of Congress president Sonia Gandhi.
Srivastava, who has been associated with the Congress since 1990, wrote that “Congress has deviated from the democratic system and has turned into a private limited company, where from block to district and state level, selection of office-bearers is done through a committee, which acts like a board of directors”.
Listing eight points which, according to him, led to the Congress’ rout in Uttar Pradesh, Srivastava wrote that the alliance with Samajwadi Party led the people to believe that Congress was supporting SP’s misrule. He also mentioned that no one liked the way senior leader Sheila Dikshit withdrew as CM candidate due to the alliance with SP.
Srivastava wrote that most senior leaders maintained till the last moment that the party would go it alone in the polls. When it announced the alliance, it lost the trust of party workers, supporters and the people, he claimed. Many SP leaders were given Congress tickets even though they had nothing to do with Congress, he added.
“The issues I have mentioned in my letter are what many Congress workers feel. It is sad that even today, after such a defeat, the party is not ready to listen or accept them. I have been associated with the Congress since my student days and I felt it was time that someone raised these issues,” Srivastava told The Indian Express.
Ram Krishna Dwivedi, chairman of the Congress Disciplinary Committee, said, “It is unfortunate that a party spokesperson is speaking in this manner. For party members there are many forums within the party to raise concerns, but this act comes under indiscipline. Srivastava has been expelled for six years.”
Meanwhile, Dinesh Pratap Singh —- MLC from Rae Bareli where Sonia Gandhi is the local MP —- asserted that either he or K L Sharma, Sonia’s representative, would remain in the party. Singh alleged that Sharma was behind a no-confidence motion in the zila panchayat against his brother Awadhesh Singh —- chairman of the zila panchayat in Rae Bareli. Sharma denied the allegations.
V K Shukla, the district Congress president of Rae Bareli, wrote a letter Tuesday evening informing that Singh’s primary membership had been suspended indefinitely for misbehaving with office-bearers of the party and making false allegations against them.
Sources said the party fears that Singh plans to leave the party and wants to be expelled so that he is not disqualified under the anti-defection law. Singh said he had not received the letter regarding suspension and would respond only after seeing it.