SHILLONG, Sept 18 - Senior Congress leader and former Meghalaya Chief Minister DD Lapang has blamed Congress president Rahul Gandhi for his exit from the party, saying veterans like him are being forced out of the party.
Returning from New Delhi after submitting his resignation, Lapang reached Nongpoh in Ri-Bhoi district on Monday where he was greeted by hundreds of supporters.
He said that he offered his resignation because �Rahul Gandhi has adopted a new policy,� which pushes out seniors so that young leaders can be accommodated. �What kind of a leadership asks its seniors to stop? I am against such policies. This has hurt my sentiments as I still want to serve the people,� the 84-year-old politician said.
Stating that he has �sacrificed a lot for the party� over the past 45 years as a Congressman, Lapang said the new policy adopted by Rahul Gandhi does not respect this contribution made by senior and elderly members of the party.
�It is useless to be in the Congress when it does not respect senior leaders like me,� Lapang said, adding that the Congress has also gradually pushed out senior leaders like Ambika Soni, Digvijay Singh, Kamal Nath and Sushilkumar Shinde from the party.
Lapang, who submitted his resignation letter to the Congress president on September 14 in New Delhi, said that he would not withdraw his resignation.
In his letter, he stated that �senior and elderly people� like him were being phased out despite their sacrifices for the party and their desire to work for the people.
�I have withstood the test of time. Rahul wanted to talk to me, and even Sonia wanted to speak to me. Mukul (CLP leader) spoke to me for over an hour. But I have decided to quit and not withdraw my resignation as I am a man of words,� he maintained.
The five-time Chief Minister said that he would continue to remain in active politics and serve the people. But he did not reveal which political party he would join.
�If any like-minded leader shares my views and opinions, irrespective of party affiliation, I will decide my future course of action in consultation with my supporters,� he stated.