Barkha Shukla Singh, a Delhi Congress leader who described Rahul Gandhi as “mentally unfit” in a press statement she tweeted, has been expelled from the party this morning.
“This is to inform that Barkha Shukla Singh has been removed from the post of president of Delhi Pradesh Mahila Congress with immediate effect,” All India Mahila Congress President Shobha Oza said in a statement.
The Congress said this morning that Ms Singh was being expelled for six years for “undertaking anti-party activities just before the MCD elections.” The decision had been taken by the party’s disciplinary committee, it said.
She on Thursday had hit out at vice-president Rahul Gandhi, calling him “unfit to lead the party”, and alleged harassment of party workers by Delhi unit chief Ajay Maken.
“Rahul Gandhi is unfit to lead the party,” she said in the letter. “The one pertinent question we need to ask today is why is Rahul Gandhi in hiding? Why is he scared of meeting his own party members?” adding, “Senior most leaders of the party, I would not like to name anybody, are also of the view that Rahul Gandhi is mentally unfit to lead the party but choose not to say it because of reasons that are unknown to me.”
Singh alleged Maken had misbehaved with women party workers. “Ajay Maken, Rahul Gandhi’s nominee in the party, misbehaved not only with me but also with several office-bearers of the Delhi Mahila Congress. When the same was brought to the notice of Rahul Gandhi, our plea fell on deaf ears.”
“It is because of this attitude of Rahul Gandhi and Ajay Maken that as many as five districts presidents and 75 block presidents resigned from the organisation. One of them has also filed a complaint of harassment against Ajay Maken and (All India Mahila Congress President) Shobha Oza,” she added.
“With utmost regret I have to say that the Congress party under the leadership of Rahul Gandhi and Ajay Maken have only used the issue of empowerment of women and women security to gather votes. It means nothing to them,” Singh said in a statement.
A defiant Singh said she will adopt legal options against her removal and said she would not quit the party, claiming herself to be a “loyal soldier” of the Congress. However, on Friday she was expelled from the party, said reports. “I will not quit the Congress and continue to wage my war within the party,” she said, adding that “I will move the court against my illegal removal”.
Delhi Congress’ chief spokesperson Sharmishtha Mukherjee later said that Singh was settling her “personal grudges” and “hurting” party interests at a crucial time when MCD polls are round the corner. “She is not a ‘loyal soldier’ but a back-stabber who is deliberately trying to harm the party at a crucial juncture,” Mukherjee said.
The move came days after former Delhi Congress Chief Arvinder Singh Lovely left the party and joined BJP, also expressing deep dissatisfaction with the Congress leadership, including Mr Gandhi and the way the party is being run.
“No one listens,” was the plaint of Delhi Congress veteran AK Walia, who had threatened to resign last month over the selection of candidates for the civic polls.