BJP rebel outfit in Himachal heads for split
The Himachal Lokhit Party (HLP), a political outfit formed around two years ago by BJP rebels, seems heading for a split. Party chief Maheshwar Singh Sunday removed senior leader Khushi Ram Balnatah from all posts alleging he was conniving with his former party.
In a notice to party vice president Balnatah that he had indulged in anti-party activities, four-time MP Maheshwar Singh said: "You tried to instigate workers to leave the party. You have been conniving with BJP leaders. The party will not tolerate this."
"The HLP is committed to becoming a strong third force in the state and does not want to meet the fate of other parties, which failed to sustain in the past," Maheshwar Singh said in a statement.
Reacting to the action against him, former legislator Balnatah blamed the party president for hobnobbing with the ruling Congress in the state.
"I worked sincerely for the party since it was formed in February 2012. Every worker knows about it," Balnatah told IANS.
Earlier, two senior leaders of the party -- Dulo Ram and K.D. Dharmani -- both two-time legislators, rejoined the Bharatiya Janata Party.
The HLP has already decided not to merge with the BJP and announced it would support the Aam Aadmi Party in all four Lok Sabha seats in Himachal Pradesh for the May 7 polls.
HLP sources said there was discontent within the party against the decision of the party president that the HLP would not contest the Lok Sabha elections.
"Most of the party leaders are unhappy over the decision to extend support to the AAP without any offer from it," a senior leader said.
Maheshwar Singh, a sitting legislator from Kullu, along with former assembly speaker Radha Raman Shastri and two former ministers - Shyama Sharma and Mohinder Sofat - had resigned from the BJP ahead of the 2012 assembly elections.
They formed the HLP under Maheshwar Singh's leadership and contested the assembly polls, winning a seat.
(Posted on 16-03-2014)