BJP expels Jammu and Kashmir leader Chaman Lal Gupta (Lead)

June 1st, 2011 - 12:35 am ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata Party New Delhi/Jammu, May 31 (IANS) The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) Tuesday expelled its seniormost leader in Jammu and Kashmir and former union minister of state Chaman Lal Gupta for six years for “anti-party activities”.

The party earlier suspended Gupta and six other legislators from the state last month for cross-voting during the legislative council elections April 13.

The BJP’s decision to expel Gupta comes after he recently issued disqualification notices to four party legislators who had been exonerated by the party leadership of cross-voting in the legislative council elections.

The BJP parliamentary board met here Tuesday evening and decided to expel Gupta, who was union minister of state of defence from 2002 to 2004, from the party’s primary membership for six years.

In Jammu, Gupta expressed ignorance about the expulsion order. “I will react only when I get the notice,” he said.

“They (party leadership) must realise that I am the architect of the party and have strengthened it all along,” Gupta told IANS.

The BJP parliamentary board meeting in Delhi was presided over by party president Nitin Gadkari.

A statement issued by the party after the meeting said that the parliamentary board noted with concern the “anti-party activities” of Gupta.

“Though he had already been suspended from the party on charge of anti-party activity, yet he issued show cause notices to four BJP members of legislative assembly of Jammu and Kashmir. This, the parliamentary board, treats as a further case of gross indiscipline and resolves to expel Chaman Lal Gupta from the primary membership of the BJP for a period of six years with immediate effect,” the statement said.

The party’s decision will also be communicated to Jammu and Kashmir assembly Speaker Mohammad Akbar Lone.

Gupta, one of seven legislators suspended by the party for cross-voting in the legislative council elections, earlier in the day issued disqualification notices to four party colleagues who had been exonerated by the party in the cross-voting matter.

Gupta, while reiterating that he still headed the legislature party, issued the notices to Ashok Khajuria, Sham Choudhary, Sukhnandan Choudhary and Jugal Kishore Sharma.

He asked them to explain why they should not be disqualified as legislators.

This followed the request of BJP deputy legislature party leader Jugal Kishore Sharma to the speaker last week to disqualify Gupta and six other BJP legislators.

The party’s state unit last week issued “disqualification notices” to the seven legislators who had cross-voted in the legislative council elections.

All seven were suspended by the party for violating the party whip and voting for the National Conference-Congress coalition candidates in the legislative council elections instead of the BJP candidate.

The Jammu and Kashmir assembly has BJP 11 members, of whom only four voted for party candidate Ranjit Singh Thakur.

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