The Congress suffered yet another jolt on Thursday when the family of one of its oldest families severed its ties with the party.
Former MLA Lalitesh Pati Tripathi, great-grandson of late Kamla Pati Tripathi, former UP chief minister, announced that he was quitting the Congress because dedicated and loyal party workers and cadre were being side-lined and neglected.
Addressing a press conference, he said that he had decided to leave the party because he felt helpless at the prevailing state of affairs.
However, he added, he would like to thank Rahul Gandhi and Priyanka Gandhi for giving him an opportunity to serve the party.
The former MLA said that he had not decided his future course of action but would continue to work for the poor and the marginalized sections of society.
Lalitesh Pati, a few days ago, had resigned as vice president of the UP Congress, fuelling speculation about his quitting the party as well.
The Kamla Pati Tripathi family has been one of the pillars of the Congress, particularly in Uttar Pradesh, and is among the most revered among the party workers. Besides, the family has also been the Brahmin face of the Congress.
According to sources, Lalitesh Pati had been upset with the ‘insulting’ behaviour of UPCC president Ajay Kumar Lallu who did not give him “due respect”.
Lalitesh is the third senior and important Congress leader to have quit the party in recent months due to the alleged high-handedness of the state leadership.
Earlier, former MP Annu Tandon and then Jitin Prasad had quit the Congress.
While Annu Tandon has joined the Samajwadi Party, Jitin Prasad has joined the BJP.