BHUBANESWAR: At a time when Odisha Congress is entangled in internal wrangling, the All India Congress Committee (AICC) has issued a show cause notice seeking clarification from party MLA Naba Kishore Das for allegedly watching porn video clips on his mobile phone in the assembly in session.
Sources in the party said the AICC has written a letter to Das and sought a reply from the legislator about the incident which has, many believe, embarrassed the party trying to revive its fortune under the leadership of Prasad Harichandan.
While senior party leader Bhakta Charan Das has already put the Congress party in embarrassing position by expressing his displeasure over selection of Kalahandi president in media and got the support of some senior leaders, some fellow legislators of Das, according to highly placed party sources, had sent the porngate content to AICC to prove their concern for the party’s image.
The move of some party leaders against Naba Das showed that the party bickering had gained momentum among the leaders despite the party MLAs showed a united front in the assembly to protect Naba Das over the porngate controversy.
While several leaders avoided making statement over the show cause notice issued by AICC, opposition chief whip Taraprasad Bahinipati trying to distance himself from the issue said Pradesh Congress chief would reply to the AICC’s letter.
“None from AICC has spoken to me on the matter. Nobody has asked me about the issue either. If the AICC has sent any letter, it must have been addressed to the OPCC chief and undoubtedly he will submit a report based on truth,” said Bahinipati.
It is to be noted that some leaders led by Naba Das had camped at Delhi and met Rahul Gandhi seeking to replace Bahinipati from chief whip post, which was denied by party president and Das himself.
The leader of opposition Narasingh Mishra, who had made a strong case for a fair inquiry into the porngate incident, refused to comment on the issue.
“Don’t ask me any question on party affairs,” all that he wished to say over the issue.
OPCC president Prasad Harichanda said, “I don’t want to comment on the matter. I have no information on this.”
AICC Odisha in-charge Subhankar Sarkar also preferred to keep mum on the issue, which is haunting the party and the opposition party will anytime raise the issue to corner the grand old party, whenever is required.
“It is an internal issue of the party. We will tackle this on our own,” said Sarkar.
On December 15, Naba Das was caught in camera for allegedly watching porn video clips in the house during question hours.
BJD’s Pramila Mallick brought allegation against Das while ruling party moved a motion against the Congress MLA and he was suspended from the Assembly for seven days. The speaker had referred the matter to the Ethics Committee of the House for an inquiry.