BHOPAL: In a major embarrassment to the ruling BJP, the high-powered scrutiny committee of Madhya Pradesh government has ordered cancellation of the scheduled tribe (ST) certificate on the basis of which two-time BJP MP Jyoti Dhurve successfully contested Lok Sabha polls from Betul (reserved) seat in 2009 and 2014.
The Supreme Court-appointed committee headed by principal secretary (tribal welfare department) Ashok Shah and commissioner (tribal development) Deepali Rastogi as secretary has ordered the cancellation of the scheduled tribe certificate dated October 31, 2002.
The committee’s order also mentions about confiscating the certificate after cancellation followed by appropriate action as per law. The copy of the order is with the New Indian Express.
The deputy commissioner of tribal development on Wednesday wrote to the Betul district collector to initiate appropriate action on the committee’s order in the matter.
While the order can be challenged by the two-time BJP MP from Betul before the high court and the Supreme Court, the opposition Congress has jumped on to capitalise from the development.
The party’s state spokesperson KK Mishra has demanded that the Election Commission of India (ECI) cancel Dhurve’s Lok Sabha membership. He has also demanded that the ECI should order lodging of FIR against Dhurve for contesting the two parliamentary polls on a fake ST certificate.
Further, Mishra has demanded recovery of salaries, perquisites and all other benefits enjoyed by Dhurve as MP since 2009.
Dhurve remained unavailable for comments.