Mayawati removes BSP's MP chief over molestation case

Mayawati file pti (File) BSP chief Mayawati | PTI

A day after Narmada Prasad Ahirwar, chief of the Madhya Pradesh unit of Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), was booked by police for allegedly molesting a 41-year-old woman party worker, party supremo Mayawati removed him from his post on Thursday night.

According to BSP sources, Pradeep Ahirwar has been tipped to become new state president and former MLA Ramlakhan Singh will be organisation secretary. The party will hold a state-level meeting on Sunday to declare the name of the next state president.

On Wednesday, Narmada Prasad and two BSP activists—Rajaram Yadav and Mahesh Kushwaha—were booked under IPC sections 354 (assault or criminal force to woman with intent to outrage her modesty), 506 (criminal intimidation) and 34 (criminal act done by several persons), Ramcharan Meena, inspector of T.T. Nagar police station said.

BSP sources said Mayawati had taken serious note of the incident after an internal inquiry by the BSP was conducted. In a police complaint lodged before T.T. Nagar police station of Bhopal, the 41-year-old BSP worker, who previously worked in the health department, said, she had gone to the BSP's state office in Bhopal’s 74 Bungalows area on May 5 to attend a party meeting.

In the office, when she asked the state president to assign her some party responsibility, Narmada Prasad reportedly told her to stay back in the party office for the night. According to T.T. Nagar Police, when the victim declined to stay at the office, Narmada Prasad grabbed her hand and tried to pull her back.

He later tried to lure her with money. The matter was reported to Rajaram, the party secretary in-charge of Madhya Pradesh, but he did not take any action. Instead, the victim was expelled from the BSP. The victim had unsuccessfully contested the Assembly polls from Sehore in 2013.

The victim has first levelled the charges against Narmada Prasad in a press conference after she was allegedly not allowed to speak in a BSP function. She was expelled from the BSP after an act of indiscipline she committed, party sources said.

The state-in charge of BSP, Ramachal Rajbhar, said “We have conducted an internal inquiry and found that Narmada Prasad was innocent, but in an election year, we do not want to give any issue to BJP and Congress; hence we are replacing him.”

“Narmada Prasad Ahirwar is a dedicated worker of BSP who left his government job and has been with us since the days of Kanshi Ram. He will continue to be with us as there are lot of discrepancies in the complaint filed by the woman. The party is holding a state-level meeting on Sunday to decide the new president,” Rajbhar added.