Internal dissension in MP SP come to fore

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Bhopal, Mar 19 (UNI) The internal dissension within the Madhya Pradesh Samajwadi Party came to fore after party legislator Kishor Samrite alleged that he had been offered Rs 10 lakh bribe to vote in favour of Congress-supported Independent candidate Vivek Tankha for the biennial election to the Rajya Sabha.

''SP President Mulayam Singh Yadav has issued a whip to cast vote in favour of Mr Tankha and disciplinary action will be initiated against those violating it. Such members could face expulsion,'' state SP President Narayan Tripathi told reporters at the Vidhan Sabha here today.

Raising question on the integrity of Mr Samrite, Mr Tripathi alleged that he had joined hands with the BJP.

''Mr Samrite went downstairs to collect money and returned to his room. Meanwhile, when he sensed something fishy, he called media,'' he said, adding the statements of Mr Samrite gave rise to several suspicions.

The SP leader dubbed the bribery episode a ''conspiracy'' by the ruling BJP and demanded a CBI inquiry into the matter. He said the Congress has not offered a bribe to Mr Samrite because all party legislators were bound to vote for Mr Tankha as per the party whip.

Meanwhile, Mr Samrite remained adamant on his statement that former Congress minister N P Prajapati offered him Rs 10 lakh bribe and pay the rest amount later.

''The whip referred to by Mr Tripathi is not really a whip, which is issued on the authorised letter of the party. A meeting of party legislators is called before issuing the whip but it has not happened,'' said Mr Samrite.

He said he was making efforts that all SP legislators maintained equal distance from both the BJP and the Congress. He would hold discussion with party leaders in this regard soon.

On whether he exercise his franchise during the Rajya Sabha election, Mr Samrite replied that he would take a decision in this regard before election date, March 28.

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