A District Planning Committee meeting in Ambedkar Nagar yesterday witnessed chaotic scenes as Samajwadi Party supporters dominated the show and almost nudged out a member of the committee,who incidentally happens to be the local BSP MP.
Leading the SP bandwagon was the district president of Ambedkar Nagar,Ram Sakal Yadav. He and his supporters turned up at the meeting chaired by Minister of State for Labour and Employment Shahid Manzoor,who is the minister in-charge of the district.
The unauthorised persons took up so much space that local MP Rakesh Pandey,who belongs to the BSP and is an ex-officio member of the District Planning Committee (DPC),could not find a place to sit.
Manzoor could not control his over-enthusiastic supporters during yesterdays meeting,though he did not attend the DPC meeting in his home district Meerut three days ago since it was chaired by his bete-noire,cabinet minister Azam Khan.
When reminded that he is not a member of the DPC,Yadav claimed that he sat quietly during the meeting. I was with mantriji and did not utter a word, he said. He explained that he had gone there to welcome the minister. I got a chair beside him and sat there. I did not participate in the proceedings.
Pandey,however,said,It was not a DPC meeting. It was attended by SP workers sporting red caps. They occupied all the chairs meant for members. He added that he would raise the issue of his humiliation in Lok Sabha.
The incident occurred in the presence of District Magistrate Pinki Jowel,SP Govind Agarwal and Chief Development Offficer Bharat Lal Rai. The DMs phone was answered by his steno Babban Singh while CDO Bharat Lal Rai confirmed that Yadav and his supporters attended the meeting. He was present but officially we did not include him in the meeting, he said. When reminded that unauthorised persons cannot attend a DPC meeting,he said: Even the DM was present and she did not say anything.
Shobhawati Verma,chairperson of the District Board,had to jostle in the crowd to find a seat. She is the wife of former BSP minister Lalji Verma. Her attendance at the meeting is crucial as development projects are later implemented under her guidance. Our resolutions were not recorded. They passed resolutions as per the wishes of SP workers who are not even members, she said.
Apart from Manzoor,two other ministers were present. Shankhlal Manjhi and Ram Murti Verma attended the meet as ex-officio members since they are local MLAs.
Yadav sat in the front row next to Manzoor. Dozens of his supporters occupied the other chairs. SP MLA Sherbahadur managed a seat in the back row and later Manjhi managed a chair for him in the front row. When MP Pandey arrived,he could not find a chair. Upset,he asked the DM,I am the local MP and member of DPC. Where is my chair? Sensing that the situation may turn ugly,SP Agarwal vacated his chair for Pandey.
During the meeting,several BSP members raised the issue. Manzoor pacified them. The meeting passed development projects worth Rs 122 crore.
📣 The Indian Express is now on Telegram. Click here to join our channel (@indianexpress) and stay updated with the latest headlines