Allahabad: Bahujan Samaj Party has expelled its leaders Ashok Bajpai and Harsh Vardhan following allegations that the father-son duo had grown indifferent towards the interests of the party after it lost power in Uttar Pradesh in the Assembly elections held last year.
The announcement of their expulsion was made here yesterday by BSP district president Lala Prasad Vidyarthi who charged the father-son duo with “failure in ensuring proper coordination with party colleagues” and not taking “adequate interest in party programmes”.
Party sources claimed that the action followed a recent incident wherein Ashok Bajpai had got involved in a heated exchange of words with party MLC Suraj Bhan Karwariya, whose brother Kapil Muni Karwariya is the BSP MP from Phulpur.
They said the incident was reported to party supremo Mayawati who took note of the alleged act of “indiscipline” and ordered that they be expelled.
Ashok Bajpai, whose mother Rajendra Kumari Bajpai was a key member of the Indira Gandhi cabinet, had been associated with the Congress till 2007 when he quit the party just a few months ahead of the Assembly elections wherein the party had denied him a ticket on the ground that he had fought in seven Assembly polls until then and lost six times.
After joining the BSP, Bajpai was immediately rewarded with an assembly ticket for his son Harsh Vardhan.
Notwithstanding Vardhan’s defeat in the assembly polls, which saw Brahmins supporting the BSP here for the first time, Mayawati continued to repose her trust in the father-son duo.
While she appointed Ashok Bajpai as the president of UP Awas Vikas Parishad, a post equivalent to the rank of a minister of state, Harsh Vardhan was made the party’s city unit president.
However, scepticism over utility of their induction into the party grew with Ashok Bajpai’s defeat from the Allahabad Lok Sabha constituency and his son’s second consecutive defeat from Allahabad (North) in the 2012 Assembly polls.
Of late, hardcore BSP workers had been complaining that the Bajpais were “born and brought up in Congress culture and finding themselves unable to adjust in the party committed to the uplift of Dalits”.
Neither of the father-son duo has spoken after the expulsion.