Two Congress candidates quit party ahead of polls

BHUBANESWAR: In a major embarrassment for opposition Congress ahead of polls in Odisha, two party candidates for assembly elections Wednesday resigned from the primary membership alleging mismanagement in the grand old party.
Yudhistir Samantray and Bibhu Tarai, candidates for Pipili and Tirtol assembly seats respectively, said they have sent their resignation letters to OPCC president Niranjan Patnaik.

While Samantray claimed that the state leadership put party tickets on sale, Tarai alleged that Congress has fielded a candidate having criminal background.
“The party has fielded a candidate who was arrested on the charge of murder. Is it not criminalisation of politics by Congress?” Tarai said.

In a video that has gone viral, Samantray said the party sold tickets for money.
He also alleged that though Congress has given him ticket to contest the assembly polls, the OPCC chief has been conspiring to defeat him in the elections.
“I will return the party ticket and will not contest this election,” Samantray said.

Tarai, a former MP, claimed that there has been a secret understanding between the Congeress and the BJD for which the party fielded weak candidates.
OPCC vice-president and spokesman Arya Gyanendra, however, rejected both the allegations and said: “There is some misunderstanding.

The party will sort out the problem.”
Sources said Tarai is likely to join the BJP and contest from Jagatsinghpur Lok Sabha seat as a saffron party candidate. PTI