Monday, 30th October 2017

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Marandi expels his MLA Bandhu

One more step towards JVM’s merger with BJP, feel insiders

By Vijay Deo Jha in Ranchi
  • Published 22.01.20, 12:17 AM
  • Updated 22.01.20, 12:17 AM
  • 2 mins read
JVM Mandar MLA Bandhu Tirkey Telegraph file picture

Babulal Marandi’s party, the JVM, on Tuesday expelled one of its three MLAs, Bandhu Tirkey, for “anti-party activities during and after the recent Assembly polls”.

Insiders termed Tirkey’s expulsion an indication of Marandi carefully inching close to merging his party with the BJP, something that the JVM chief still remains tight-lipped about.

Tirkey was opposed to the merger.

The party expelled him based on a complaint by its Hatia Assembly candidate Shobha Yadav who claimed Tirkey campaigned for her rival Congress candidate Ajay Nath Shahdeo, attaching photographs as “proof”.

The JVM show-caused Tirkey on January 17, which was sent to his address the next day. In the show-cause letter signed by party principal general secretary Abhay Singh, Tirkey was asked to explain the allegations within 48 hours.

The Mandar MLA did not respond within deadline, a JVM leader said, leading to his expulsion.

But more drama followed on Tuesday. Hours after he was expelled and the news flashed, Tirkey wrote to Singh denying the allegations and claimed the purported pictures of his campaigning for the Congress were before the 2019 parliamentary election where he was campaigning for the Ranchi Congress MP nominee Subodh Kant Sahay.

Tirkey claimed he uploaded photographs of that campaign on his Facebook account on May 2, 2019, and the pictures were identical to what Yadav submitted.

The JVM was part of the UPA alliance during the Lok Sabha polls, Tirkey pointed out.

The party did not relent.

Asked how he was after being expelled, Tirkey claimed he was happy.

“JVM chief Babulal Marandi is pursuing his agenda to merge the JVM with the BJP which I had opposed. Now I am free to chart my path,” Tirkey said. “I worked along with him for around four to five years and I learnt a lot of things from him and I have a lot of respect for him. I further seek apology if I committed any mistake unintentionally towards him during my half-decade long association with him.”

He did not say if he would join the Congress as is widely believed.

JVM principal general secretary Singh refused to comment on Tirkey’s defence.

“Let him speak what he wishes. He ignored the show-cause notice. He responded to his expulsion once after the party took the decision. He even claimed that he did not receive any show-cause notice,” Singh said.

Singh added: “He (Tirkey) reads newspapers and issues statement but he had no time to let us know that he actually did not receive any show-cause notice in writing. He is making lame excuses. The party took the decision only after detailed verification and deliberation of anti-party activity charges against him. He keeps issuing statements against the party. Even yesterday (Monday) he admitted to a vernacular daily that during the Assembly election he acted against the party candidate and supported the Congress candidate in Hatia. He himself has accepted all these things. Hence, he has been expelled from the party permanently,” said Singh.

Apart from Tirkey, the JVM has two MLAs in the 81-member Jharkhand Assembly, Marandi (from Dhanwar) and Pradeep Yadav (Poreyahat).

Now Marandi will face no legal hurdle to get consent of a merger. Under the law, a merger proposal has to be passed by the central working committee of the party.