Revolt in Himachal Cong over expulsions

Virbhadra Singh

Within hours of PCC president, Virbhadra Singh, ordering the expulsion of 25 Congress leaders for working against official candidates in five Assembly constituencies in the recent polls, there are signs of a revolt within a section of the party.

Reports suggest former PCC president Kaul Singh Thakur and former minister G S Bali have already lodged a protest to AICC general Secretary Birender Singh in New Delhi.

In Shimla, nearly 31 Congress leaders of DCC (Urban), including two former MLAs, five former councillors and former deputy mayor Shashi Shekhar, issued a join statement on Tuesday criticising the action and threatening to approach the party high command against, what they termed, was unilateral action taken by PCC president Virbhadra Singh .

Said Pradeep Singh, president, Shimla (Urban): "The high handed expulsion of sitting councillor Sushma Kuthiala and general secretary (Shimla) Sanjeev Kuthiala is an outcome of personal animosity of a few individuals and we refuse to acknowledge such an action as it is against the party's Constitution. No opportunity was given to the Kuthialas to clear their stand on the charges."

The leaders,who signed the statement, claimed that the expulsion was biased and arbitrary and opposed it vehemently. "We condemn the action and will appraise the party leadership on how the affairs of the party are being run," said Shimla (Urban) leaders.

Reacting to his expulsion, Sanjeev Kuthiala said: "It's unfortunate that those who were working against the party in the recent Municipal Corporation elections were rewarded but people like me,who had been fighting for the interests of the party in assembly polls, have been targeted at the behest of some vested interests."

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