Union Minister for Tribal Affairs, Sri Jual Oram, has expressed surprise over the unprecedented suspension of senior leader Ashok Sahu from the BJP, saying he was not intimated about the decision either by the state unit president or any other senior leaders.
Jual Oram, who has done a lot of hard work at the grassroot level to revive the BJP’s fortunes in Odisha, said that he would talk to the central leadership on this matter. It was clear from Jual’s statement that he was not happy with the decision.
Ashok Sahu was suspended for questioning the state BJP leadership after the Kandhamal defeat. He wondered why ‘Modi Magic’ did not work in Odisha although it did wonders in Maharashtra and Haryana. He called for a self-introspection within the party. Mr. Sahu was upset that BJP fielded an “imported” leader Rudra Madhab Ray in Kandhamal instead of him.
Ashok Sahu had contested the Lok Sabha polls from Kandhamal in 2009, but lost. In 2014, he was shifted to Ouri. He expected to get a ticket in the bypoll, but the BJP leadership refused to do so.
After the suspension, Ashok Sahu called former BJP Ministers of Odisha, KV Singhdeo, Sameer Dey, Manmohan Samal and Jayanarayan Mishra as corrupt politicians. Mr. Sahu has been asked to explain his conduct within a week or else face expulsion.