PATNA: RLSP leader Nagmani, who was sacked from the post of national executive president two days back, resigned Sunday from the primary membership accusing party chief Upendra Kushwaha of "selling" Lok Sabha tickets.
"I am announcing my resignation in front of journalists since the RLSP did not observe the courtesy of providing me with a copy of the letter removing me from the top post, the contents of which I came to learn only through the media," Nagmani told reporters here.
Nagmani was sacked from the post of national executive president for indulging in anti-party activities.
"The party had held that my presence at functions attended by Chief Minister Nitish Kumar was tantamount to indiscipline. Both such functions were held in the memory of my father Jagdeo Prasad, who is extolled by our Kushwaha community as an icon. Can I be accused of anti-party activities in such a backdrop," Nagmani asked.
The former Union minister in Atal Behari Vajpayee's government also alleged that Upendra Kushwaha and his "cronies" were upset with him since February 7 when he flagged the issue of a party ticket being given from Motihari to Madhaw Anand, who hails from Madhubani and is based in Delhi.
"I told him that there is considerable resentment in Motihari over this decision of the party," Nagmani, who was himself an aspirant for party ticket from Chatra in Jharkhand, said.
He alleged that Kushwaha tried to silence him by saying that Anand had used his corporate connections to get Rs 9 crore for the party.
"I reminded Kushwaha that people like me had joined his party and offered him support since we strongly felt that our community, despite being sizeable, has not got its due in Bihar's politics. He was compromising on our cherished goal by putting tickets on sale. He did not say anything then but I sensed that I had ruffled many feathers. Kushwaha bared his fangs the very next day," he added.
Asked about the Rashtriya Lok Samta Party's (RLSP) contention that it was unacceptable to see him beside Nitish Kumar when the party was accusing the chief minister of having conspired to get Kushwaha killed in the lathi charge of February 2, Nagmani quipped "Kushwaha is a big 'nautankibaaz' (One who indulges in drama). He stayed in hospital for two days without having received a single blow on his body".
Reacting to Nagmanis allegations, the RLSP office here shot off a release dismissing his claims about the Motihari Lok Sabha seat.
Ir said RLSP was yet to formally announce candidates for any seat.
"The fact is, he (Nagmani) wanted the ticket for himself from Chatra in Jharkhand which he has represented in the past, besides a ticket for his wife. He has been bitter since he was given no assurance," the statement said.
The statement, signed by state RLSP general secretary Satyanand Prasad Dangi said, it is ridiculous that on the one hand Nagmani is accusing Kushwaha of putting up party tickets for sale and on the other he is also upset that after removing him from the national executive president's post, Kushwaha refused to talk to him.
Nagmani had won the Chatra seat in 1999 on an RJD ticket but engineered a split in the party headed by Lalu Prasad and joined the BJP-led NDA, becoming a minister in the Atal Bihari Vajpayee government at the Centre.
After the NDA lost power at the Centre, Nagmani switched over to Ram Vilas Paswan's LJP before crossing over to the JD(U).
His wife got elected to the Assembly on a JD(U) ticket and became a minister in the Nitish Kumar government while Nagmani himself got a berth in the legislative council.
He subsequently joined the NCP but left the party ahead of the 2014 Lok Sabha polls hoping to join the BJP, which fought the polls in alliance with Kushwahas RLSP.
He joined the RLSP in 2017, calling Kushwaha the next chief minister of Bihar, and was made the national executive president.