CM’s prerogative, says Congress on sacking of 4 UP ministers

New Delhi, Oct 23 (IANS) The Congress on Sunday maintained distance from the internal divide within the Samajwadi Party (SP) and said “it is prerogative of the state’s Chief Minister to either sack or add ministers”.

A few hours after Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Akhilesh Yadav sacked his uncle Shivpal Yadav and three other ministers from the cabinet, the state’s ruling Samajwadi Party expelled prominent leader Ram Gopal Yadav from the party.

Ram Gopal was said to be close to the Chief Minister and his expulsion from the party was announced by Shivpal Yadav, who heads the Samajwadi Party’s state unit. He was sacked from the cabinet on Sunday morning.

“This is purely an internal matter. Congress has the tradition of not interfering in the internal affairs of any party. In the interest of Uttar Pradesh, they should settle the fight within their own party,” Congress spokesperson Tom Vadakkan told IANS.

“It is the prerogative of the chief minister to sack and add ministers. This is a matter which has to be decided internally. We hope that they set their house in order and conduct fair elections in the state,” he added.

On being asked about Ram Gopal Yadav, who was expelled from the SP, Vadakkan said: “We are not taking sides. Let them settle the matter internally.”

“It wouldn’t be appropriate for any party to interfere. We’ll speak if it affects the people of Uttar Pradesh,” he said.