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Cong takes Beni to task,asks him to justify ‘B team’ remark

The Congress on Wednesday ticked off Union minister Beni Prasad Verma.

Written by Express News Service | New Delhi | Published: June 27, 2013 5:17:19 am

The Congress on Wednesday ticked off Union minister Beni Prasad Verma for his remarks that some Congress leaders worked as B team of the Samajwadi Party in Uttar Pradesh and even gave party money to SP candidates to ensure the defeat of Congress nominees. An upset party told him to discuss issues if any within the party fora and not outside.

Taken aback by his allegations,Congress general secretary Madhusudan Mistry — who is party in-charge of Uttar Pradesh — conveyed to Verma the party’s strong displeasure. Verma,sources said,was told clearly to desist from making such allegations in the interest of the party. This is not the first time that the Union minister has landed the party in trouble.

Mistry spoke to him twice over phone and is set to meet him on Thursday. After Mistry’s telephonic talk,the party disapproved his remarks. At the AICC briefing,party spokesperson Sandeep Dikshit termed Verma’s statement as his “personal view”. He said the party has asked him to provide information to back his allegation and “requested him to take up the issue in the appropriate forum as has been the practice in the party”.

“This may be his personal opinion. If he (Verma) has any information,he should share it in the party fora. Mistri has given him a chance (to explain). Let the discussion between them take place first,” Dikshit said. Indicating that the issue was far from over,he said future course of action will be decided by the party after he submits the information.

Asked whether disciplinary action could be taken against Verma as it was done in case of former AICC general secretary Margaret Alva in 2008 over her allegation that tickets were sold during Karnataka Assembly elections,he said “right now you watch what happens…what he (Verma) tells the party high command”.

Alva was divested of all her responsibilities in the party for alleging that money changed hands while distributing ticket to the party candidates.

“It is an established policy in the party that if anybody has any issues,he should first say it in the party fora,” Dikshit said. Mistry,on other hand,said he will meet Verma and “sort out” the issue.

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