Delhi BJP expels three councillors for six years over ‘graft charges’ 



NEW DELHI: Cracking the whip over complaints of corruption, Delhi BJP president Adesh Gupta on Sunday expelled three municipal councilors from the party for six years, and said more heads will roll if they are found involved in financial irregularities.

Gupta termed the action, coming months ahead of the three municipal corporations early next year, as BJP’s “zero tolerance” policy.

“Not just councilors but officers of the municipal corporations (MCDs) will also not be spared if they are found involved in corruption,” Gupta told PTI.

He said people should make videos if anyone “extorts” money from them in the name of MCDs and provide it to Delhi BJP so that FIR can be registered against them.

The councillors who have been removed from the party over graft charges are Sadulajab councillor Sanjay Thakur in South Delhi Municipal Corporation (SDMC), New Ashok Nagar councillor Rajni Babloo Pandey in East Delhi Municipal Corporation (EDMC) and Mukherjee Nagar councillor Pooja Madan in North Delhi Municipal Corporation, according to the orders issued by Delhi BJP president.

The move comes ahead of the civic polls early next year where corruption and mismanagement in municipalities is likely to be the main issue.

“You (Sanjay Thakur) are informed that due to numerous complaints of corruption against you, you are removed from the primary membership of the party for six years.

“You were many times made aware of this and asked to mend your corrupt behaviour but to no avail.

You are removed from the party for six years with immediate effect,” the expulsion letter issued to SDMC councillor Sanjay Thakur by Delhi BJP president Adesh Gupta said.

Similar expulsion letters were also issued to EDMC councillor Rajni Babloo Pandey and North MCD councillor Pooja Madan.

Calls made by PTI to seek response of the expelled councillors on the development went unanswered.

The three civic bodies — North, East and South — are ruled by the BJP while the city government is headed by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).

The AAP is the primary opposition party in three MCDs.

The civic bodies are set to undergo election early 2022 where opposition parties (AAP and Congress) will corner the BJP over the issue of “burgeoning corruption”.

In 2017 civic polls, the BJP has not given tickets to any of the sitting councillors due to corruption allegations against them.

In last one year many AAP leaders including CM Arvind Kejriwal and his deputy Manish Sisodia had raised the issues of corruption and mismanagement in civic bodies.

They had held that corrupt practices by BJP councillors and officials as responsible for poor financial situation of the three municipalities.

AAP leaders had alleged that many BJP councillors were involved in “extortion and other corrupt practices” in all the three civic bodies.

In April this year, senior AAP leader and MLA from Greater Kailash Saurabh Bharadwaj had accused BJP’s Saidulajab councillor Sanjay Thakur of being involved in corruption.

Bharadwaj had said that Thakur has a “nexus with local builders” and “extorts money” from common people when they try to do any type of construction in the area.

Similarly, in August last year, senior AAP leader Durgesh Pathak had accused New Ashok Nagar councillor Rajni Babloo Pandey and her kin of “extracting money” from people for illegally building houses in the area.

The party had also released an audio recording between a builder and the councillor’s brother-in-law where a man was purportedly heard saying that he had given money to civic officials and also to councillor’s brother-in-law but still the construction was stalled.

These allegations were, however, denied by the councillor as “baseless”.


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