All is apparently not well withHaryana’s Chautala fami ly which leads the main opposition party, Indian National Lok Dal (INLD). Confirming the rift within the Chautala family, the INLD president Om Prakash Chautala Thursday not only dissolve the party’s youth and student wings, but also effected organisational restructuring in the party.
While the changes consolidate the position of Chautala’s younger son Abhay Singh Chautala who is a legislator and leader of Opposition in the Assembly, the latest changes are being seen as a setback for the faction led by Abhay’s elder brother Ajay Singh Chautala (who is in jail).
In Ajay’s absence, his two sons (Abhay’s nephews) Dushyant Chautala who is member of Parliament from Hisar and Digvijay Chautala have taken the leadership role by heading the party’s youth and student wins respectively. Their mother Naina Chautala is also a legislator from Dabwali constituency.
But as Haryana is heading for Assembly polls due next year, there is a rift over the party’s chief ministerial candidate with Ajay’s supporters along with two wings headed by his sons have been making the case for declaring Dushyant as the party’s CM face ahead of Abhay who otherwise remains the sole choice in absence Chautala senior and Ajay, both serving jail terms in a recruitment scam.
The INLD had to suffer embarrassment on Sunday when a group of youths allegedly indulged in hooting in party’s Gohana rally on 7 October when the Leader of Opposition Abhay was speaking, while there were cheers for Dushyant Chautala as he spoke. Taking a serious view of this, senior Chautala, who too was present in the rally as he has been given two-week parole, had warmed action against this act of indiscipline.
In a statement, the INLD said national president of INLD, Om Prakash Chautala, has dissolved the Youth wing of INLD and the national and State units of Indian National Students Organisation (INSO).
“Both wings of the Party were found to be lacking in discipline and commitment to the ideals of the party. While the youth wing failed to play its role during the Gohana rally of 7 October, 2018 the INSO was found indulging in blatant anti party activities. It is also accused of entering into a conspiracy with anti-party forces to disrupt the above said rally and smear the name of INLD,” it said.
Those seen supporting Ajay and his sons were also removed from various positions in the INLD. The development also comes at a time when student union polls are taking place in the state after a gap of 22 years and the next Lok Sabha elections are not far off. While Abhay’s supporters termed the demand for declaring Dushyant as CM candidate a conspiracy against the INLD, the latter’s supporters warned the party against taking action against Ajay’s sons.
Taking a dig at the INLD, Bharatiya Janata Party leader and health minister Anil Vij said the Opposition party is on the verge of split as Abhay Chautala is denying space to his two nephews in the party.