Congress on Tuesday suspended its rebel MLA R Roshan Baig from the party with immediate effect for “anti-party” activities.”
“All India Congress Committee has approved the proposal sent by KPCC to take action against R Roshan Baig, MLA on account of his anti-party activities. He has been suspended from the party with immediate effect,” Karnataka Pradesh Congress Committee said in a press statement.
Baig, a seven-time legislator from Bengaluru’s Shivajinagar constituency had earned the wrath of the Congress leadership after he lashed out at party leaders for its poor performance in the Lok Sabha elections. He had held former Karnataka CM Siddaramaiah’s “arrogance” and state Congress president Dinesh Gundu Rao’s “immaturity” responsible for the “flop show”. He had also called AICC general secretary K C Venugopal a “buffoon.”
Earlier, Baig had dropped hints of quitting Congress and joining the ruling BJP in a TV interview. He had even appealed to Muslims to “compromise” with the situation, on BJP returning to power, which drew a lot of criticism among his constituents, a majority of who are Muslims. “If BJP comes back to power, I humbly appeal to my Muslim brothers to learn to compromise with the situation,” he had said.
Baig was excluded out of the Cabinet of the Congress-Janata Dal (Secular) coalition government, which had upset him. He is also believed to have been displeased with the growing clout of party colleague, fellow Muslim leader, and state minority affairs minister B.Z. Zameer Ahmed Khan in the party.
Baig was also denied a ticket by the party to contest from the Bengaluru Central Lok Sabha constituency in the general elections and the ticket was given instead to Rizwan Arshad.
Baig’s alleged links with IMA
Earlier in the day, KPCC president Dinesh Gundu Rao had said Baig’s alleged links with Bengaluru-based investment firm IMA in the multi-crore financial fraud, which has duped thousands of investors, would be brought to the notice of central leadership for further action.
Roshan Baig is in the middle of a growing controversy over his friendship with IMA scam accused Mohammed Mansoor Khan, who has gone absconding, leaving thousands of customers in the lurch.
After Khan went absconding, an audio clip purportedly by Khan surfaced on social media, in which he blamed Baig for extorting hundreds of crores for him, because of which his company had suffered losses.
While Baig has denied all allegations against him, now, Karnataka Revenue minister R V Deshpande has told the media that Baig had introduced Mansoor Khan to him about a month ago seeking “relief” for Khan’s company, which was facing inquiries at the behest of the RBI.
On Tuesday, a dozen state Congress members moved a petition seeking action against Baig in light of his alleged involvement with Khan. “As office-bearers, we oppose anything that brings a bad name to the party and those responsible for it should be immediately expelled,” they said in their petition.