MADHYA PRADESH BJP on Saturday suspended its MLA and former minister Gaurishankar Shejwar for ‘anti-party’ activities after he campaigned for Uma Bharti’s Bharatiya Janashakti (BJ) in Vidisha and Bada Malehra by-elections. He is the fifth Uma loyalist MLA to face suspension from the BJP. Four others — Jalam Singh Patel, Hari Singh Chadar, Rasal Singh and Sunil Nayak — had been suspended from the party soon after Uma Bharti was expelled in November last year.
Though these MLAs make no secret of their being with Uma Bharti, they have not quit the BJP, presumably to avoid disqualification under the anti-defection law. If the BJP expels them, they will continue to be members of the State legislature.
State BJP president Satyanarayan Jatia announced Shejwar’s suspension in presence of national president Rajnath Singh at the Bhoj airport. He, however, did not elaborate on reason behind the action. “We received reports from everywhere that Shejwar, who had also been issued show cause notice sometime ago, was indulging in anti-party activities. In view of the seriousness of the matter, he was suspended,” Jatia told newsmen.
About the possibility of Shejwar’s expulsion from the party, he said a decision would be taken at “an appropriate forum”. The party would go by its constitution before expelling any erring worker, he added.
Dr Shejwar, a Scheduled Caste, was leader of the opposition in the Assembly during the Digvijay Singh’s second term. Welcoming his suspension from the BJP, Dr Shejwar said it would have been better if the action was taken much earlier. “The BJP lacked internal democracy and dissenting voice is being crushed,” he alleged.
Talking to reporters at Raisen, Dr Shejwar said Bharti was being welcomed across the State and he would side with those who were meted out injustice.
Dr Shejwar, who had reportedly garlanded Bharti and attended Bharatiya Janshakti workers’ meeting at Raisen two days ago, did not specify whether he would formally join the BJ.