BJP suspends Rajasthan leader Kailash Meghwal for ‘corrupt number 1’ attack
BJP’s state disciplinary committee chairman Onkar Singh Lakhawat on Wednesday announced Kailash Meghwal’s suspension on Wednesday
JAIPUR: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Wednesday suspended 89-year-old Rajasthan legislator Kailash Meghwal from the party, weeks after he accused union law minister Arjun Ram Meghwal of corruption and sought his removal from the union cabinet.
Kailash Meghwal surprised party leaders last month when he described the union minister as “corrupt number 1” on August 28 and declined to back down. The party issued show cause notice to the Shahpura MLA within 24 hours and gave him 10 days to respond.
BJP’s state disciplinary committee chairman Onkar Singh Lakhawat on Wednesday announced Kailash’s suspension. “State BJP president CP Joshi ordered suspension of Kailash Meghwal from the primary membership of the party,” Lakhawat said in a statement.
“Joshi has directed that Meghwal’s reply to the notice of indiscipline issued to him and the entire matter be handed over to the party’s state disciplinary committee for further action,” the statement added.
Kailash Meghwal, a veteran party leader who has been BJP’s vice president and speaker of the state assembly in the past, said he welcomed his suspension. “I will contest the [upcoming] elections and defeat the BJP candidate.”
Kailash Meghwal accused the BJP of sidelining him and former chief minister Vasundhara Raje.
“I was once a hero in this party and today, I am a zero from a hero. The party is taking out four [parivartan] yatras but I am not part of any of them,” he said.
“The only reason for this is that Arjun Ram Meghwal is being given more encouragement and being promoted as a scheduled caste leader in the BJP,” he said, explaining the party’s tactics to an attempt to curtail former chief minister Vasundhara Raje’s support base.
“I am also being seen as part of the Raje camp,” he added.
On August 28, Kailash Meghwal, a six-time lawmaker, called Arjun Meghwal “corrupt number 1”. “He has corruption cases against him which are going on to this day...”. He reiterated the allegation on Wednesday and demanded that the union minister, who represents Bikaner in the Lok Sabha, should be dropped till the “pending cases” against him are decided.
“I have written to the prime minister that till the cases pending in the court are not decided, he should be removed from the post of a minister,” Kailash Meghwal (89) told reporters. “I hope that the prime minister will take the right decision.”
The MLA further alleged that a case registered by Rajasthan’s Anti-Corruption Bureau (ACB) was pending since 2014.
“This is not an election stunt,” he said, adding that when Arjun Ram Meghwal became the law minister, he started collecting evidence against him as it was not right that a “corrupt person” occupies the post.