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“It is not right in God’s sight to obey men rather than God.”

Senior Cong leader Manak Agarwal resigns, blames central leaders of selling poll tickets

BHOPAL: Madhya Pradesh state Congress on Thursday received a rude shock when party vice-president and senior leader Manak Agarwal sent in his resignation from the post to the PCC office.

Agarwal resigned in protest arguing that certain Delhi-based leaders are getting candidature tickets for their supporters in the urban body elections when grassroots workers who toil are being left out. He also alleged that four-times Rajya Sabha MP Suresh Pachauri sold tickets before every election.

Quarrel over ticket distribution took an ugly turn on Tuesday when a group of miscreants from rival senior Congress leader Suresh Pachauri camp attempted an armed attack on Agarwal in his chamber inside the state Congress headquarters.

Agarwal said, “Ticket for the municipal chairman of Itarsi was determined by senior Congress leader Sanjay Nirupam in consultation with PCC president Arun Yadav. It was decided that the ticket would be given to a former councillor. When everything was ready, phone calls have come from Suresh Pachauri and National Mahila Congress president Shobha Oza who pushed their candidate and got the ticket.”

Agarwal argued that Suresh Pachauri and Shobha Oza did not visit Itarsi even once in the past five years. “The grassroots worker who built a base for the Congress walking from door-to-door meeting people in Itarsi is denied a ticket and a high-flier with Delhi connections walks away with the candidature. This is precisely why the Congress is losing electoral battles," he added.

State Congress leaders tried contacting Manak Agarwal but he refused to speak to anyone. “I am not going to speak to anybody till the Congress takes a hard stand that election tickets will not be sold. Round the year, we work and toil in the constituencies and when the time comes for elections then under-the-table cash payments gets the ticket. This needs to be stopped,” he said.

Agarwal also threatened that he is still a primary member of the party but will leave that too if former state Mahila Congress chief Archana Jaiswal is not fielded from Indore whenever the urban civic polls are held for that city.