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Ex-Uttarakhand Cong chief removed from all posts for ‘anti-party activities’

Congress president Sonia Gandhi has appointed former AICC general secretary Mohan Prakash as the senior observer for overseeing election campaign management and coordination in the hill state

Former Uttarakhand Congress president Kishore Upadhyay. (Twitter/KupadhyayINC)

Days after former Uttarakhand Congress president Kishore Upadhyay met senior state BJP leaders, the Congress party on Wednesday removed him from all posts for “anti-party activities”, pending further action in the matter.

Upadhyay was chairman of the Uttarakhand Congress Coordination Committee and was a member of the state Congress Core Committee and the Uttarakhand Congress Pradesh Election Committee.

In a letter to Upadhyay, the Congress’s Uttarakhand in-charge Devendra Yadav accused him of “continuous anti-party activities” and “hobnobbing” with the ruling BJP in the poll-bound state.

On January 3, Upadhyay had met senior Uttarakhand BJP leaders at the residence of BJP organisational general secretary Ajeya Kumar. The meeting, in which BJP election in-charge Pralhad Joshi was also present, triggered speculation about Upadhyay joining the saffron party.

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“People of Uttarakhand are yearning for change and are waiting to throw out the corrupt BJP government. There is wide spread anger with the maladministration, misgovernance and all-round corruption aided and abetted by the BJP leadership. It is the solemn duty of each one of us to rise to the challenge and serve the Devbhumi of Uttarakhand as also its people. Sadly, you have been hobnobbing with BJP and other political parties with a view to undermine this fight and weaken the cause of the people,” Yadav alleged in his letter.

The Congress in-charge stated that despite multiple warnings given to him, Upadhyay’s alleged anti-party activities have continued. “You (Upadhyay) are therefore removed from all party positions, pending further action in the matter,” the letter added.

A former MLA, Upadhyay has been openly critical against the Congress in the recent past, alleging that the party did not give him his dues despite his playing a significant role in establishing it in the hill state.

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Meanwhile, Congress president Sonia Gandhi on Wednesday night appointed former AICC general secretary Mohan Prakash as the senior observer for overseeing election campaign management and coordination in Uttarakhand.

Prakash’s appointment came days after top Congress leader Rahul Gandhi placated senior Uttarakhand party leader and former Chief Minister Harish Rawat by telling the state leaders that the latter will lead the party’s campaign in the state in the Assembly polls scheduled for 14 February.

Rawat had openly expressed his dissatisfaction with the organisation and even suggested retirement from politics. He was said to be unhappy over Devendra Yadav’s repeated pronouncements that the election will be fought under a collective leadership. He was also unhappy with Yadav’s style of functioning.

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The Congress said Prakash will work in close coordination with Yadav in Uttarakhand.

First published on: 12-01-2022 at 11:24:14 pm
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