- Srikant Jena and Krushna Sagaria were expelled on Saturday
- Mr Jena was a former Union Minister in the previous UPA government
- Congress said the leaders issued anti-party statements to the media
The Congress on Saturday expelled former Union Minister Srikant Jena and former MLA Krushna Chandra Sagaria for alleged anti-party activities, a senior leader said.
The announcement was made late at night by Odisha Congress' disciplinary committee convener Ananta Prasad Sethi.
"Both Jena and Sagaria have been expelled from the party as per the approval of the All India Congress Committee," Mr Sethi said in a statement.
They issued anti-party statements to the media causing damage to the Congress and were expelled from the primary membership of the party, Mr Sethi added.
"They also issued remarks against OPCC (Odisha Pradesh Congress Committee) functionaries," the Congress leader alleged.
While Mr Jena was a former Union Minister in the previous UPA government, Dalit leader Mr Sagaria represented Koraput in the state assembly.
Mr Sagaria had in November resigned from the membership of the Odisha assembly, as he was allegedly upset over failing to ensure justice for a rape and murder victim and her family at Kunduli in Koraput district.
Earlier in the day, Mr Sagaria had strongly criticised OPCC president Niranjan Patnaik.
"Congress is not a property of Niranjan Patnaik. He is indulging in anti-party activities by giving statements on who will get ticket or not in the media," Mr Sagaria had said.
The action against Mr Jena and Mr Sagaria comes just two days after Congress suspended Sundergarh MLA Jogesh Singh from the party due to anti-party activities. Mr Singh resigned from the party on Friday.
Earlier, OPCC working president and Jharsuguda MLA Naba Kishore Das had quit the party and joined the ruling Biju Janata Dal headed by Naveen Patnaik.
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