Shivpal expels minister from party; Akhilesh retains him in cabinet
In the first incident of its kind in state’s politics, a minister has been expelled from the party on the charges of indiscipline while he remains the member of the council of ministers because of his proximity with the Chief Minister.
Samajwadi Party president Shivpal Singh Yadav has expelled Tej Pratap Pandey, alias Pawan Pandey, Minister of State for Forest, from the party for manhandling an MLC Aashu Mallick and asked the CM to drop him from his cabinet but Akhilesh Yadav is yet to sack him.
Shivpal Yadav said that the decision to expel the Minister was taken by party’s national president Mulayam Singh Yadav.
“We have written a letter to the UP Chief Minister to dismiss Pawan Pandey from the Ministerial position as he has been expelled from the party following the clash with MLC Ashu Malik,” Shivpal said.
Malik has lodged a police complaint against Pandey but since the incident occurred inside the CM’s residence, no FIR has so far been registered.
Shivpal said that indiscipline would not be tolerated at any cost and those trying to create trouble would be shown the door.
He also claimed that “all is well within the family and the party and all are united and there is no discord at any level in the party”.
Pawan Pandey is a key member of `Team Akhilesh’ and was given the party ticket in 2012 only because of his proximity with Akhilesh Yadav. SP had denied a ticket to his uncle and senior SP leader Jai Shankar Pandey from Faizabad. Pawan Pandey in 2012 had defeated the veteran BJP leader Lallu Singh who was later elected to Lok Sabha from Faizabad in 2014 elections.
Unfazed by the announcement of his expulsion, Pawan Pandey said the order is a “piece of paper” which has no value.
“Mulayam Singh Yadav and chief minister Akhilesh Yadav are both respected leaders of the party and I have full faith in their leadership and no other leader matters in the party’’, he said in Faizabad.
“The charges leveled by Ashu Malik are a lie and this can be confirmed from the footage of the CCTV cameras installed at the residence of the chief minister. The security officer posted at the chief minister’s residence has given in writing to the police that no such incident of clash or manhandling of any person occurred at the chief minister’s residence at the time and date given by Ashu Malik ‘’, said the minister.