The Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) has expelled some senior leaders, alleging indiscipline and working against the interests of the party. They include former state ministers and legislators. Many of these crestfallen leaders had contested the 2019 Lok Sabha polls and recent by-elections in Uttar Pradesh, but lost. Party chief Mayawati has also expelled C L Verma, a trusted colleague who had contested the Lok Sabha election from the Mohanlalganj (reserved) seat in Lucknow, but lost to Bharatiya Janata Party candidate Kaushal Kishore. Interestingly, Verma was a close confidant also of former UP minister Naseemuddin Siddiqui, who, in turn, was a true-blue follower of Mayawati before he fell out with her and joined the Congress.
Five enquiries not enough
The forest department of the Madhya Pradesh government is planning to conduct a record sixth enquiry into a plantation scam that supposedly took place when the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) was in power. The scam is of July 2017 vintage. The state government took a mammoth drive to plant 70 million saplings on a single day in the state. Forest Minister Umang Singhar, of the Congress, called it “systemic siphoning off of public funds”. The forest department had reported that the plantation data was exaggerated. In the fresh enquiry, the government will also assess the capacity of the nurseries in the state.
Better safe than sorry
As onion prices touched Rs 100 a kg in some parts of the country and as reports of consumers scrambling for the staple poured in, members of a co-operative society decided to take protection before distributing subsidised onions to consumers. Vendors of the Bihar State Cooperative Marketing Union were seen wearing helmets while unloading sacks of onions priced at Rs 35 a kg for distribution. They had set up their stalls near Gandhi Maidan in Patna on Saturday. There were reports of onions being stolen from the stalls in the past couple of weeks. With no assurance of safety from the authorities, the vendors decided to make themselves safe.