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BJP cracks the whip in Himachal Pradesh
March 04, 2003 01:31 IST
Cracking the whip on defiant party activists in Himachal Pradesh following its defeat in the assembly elections, the BJP on Monday expelled 20 leaders, including a former minister Kunj Lal Thakur, for working against party candidates and dissolved three block units.
Thakur, a senior leader from Kullu, president and general secretary of the Kutlehar unit Bhachittar Singh and Romesh Sharma, Una district vice president Puran Sharma and two others from the district Nirmal Singh and Rakesh Awasthi were expelled from the primary membership of the party for six years for 'working against the party candidates', a party release said.
State unit president Jai Kishen Sharma, who lost in the Santokgarh constituency, also expelled block presidents of Bhuntar and Banjjar, Dile Ram and Dhyan Singh and 12 partymen from Kullu district, including mahila morcha president Lata Kapoor.
The party dissolved the Jaswan, Bhuntar and Banjjar block units.
In Delhi, Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee summoned Rural Development Minister Shanta Kumar on Tuesday to explain his comments on the Himachal Pradesh government, party sources said.
Vajpayee, who on Monday spoke to Kumar over telephone, has also sought an explanation from the minister having taken strong exception to his remarks at a meeting of the BJP's central office bearers in Delhi on Sunday.
Vajpayee had told the office-bearers that 'the people were angry with us and this was evident from the kind of response at the election meetings. Had we fought unitedly the results would have been different', hinting at the infighting in the state unit.
Shanta Kumar said that people were angry and unhappy with the performance of the state government under the BJP.
He is also likely to meet Deputy Prime Minister Lal Kishenchand Advani for a detailed discussion on the issue, party sources said.
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