Row over poll stand

Provisional candidate for the FijiFirst party for the 2018 General Election Virendra Lal. Picture: SUPPLIED/FACEBOOK

THE Sanatan Dharam Pratinidhi Sabha of Fiji will hold a meeting of its national executive council on Sunday to decide the fate of its national secretary Virendra Lal.

Sabha president Sarju Prasad said the religious body was apolitical and had asked Mr Lal to resign from his position because he was a provisional candidate for the FijiFirst party for the 2018 General Election.

“Sanatan is apolitical and he is the national secretary of the Sanatan Dharam and it is wrong for us to be seen to be allied to any political party. We want to be neutral and we want to be seen to be neutral,” Mr Prasad said.

He claimed that the organisation wrote to Mr Lal asking him to resign from his position when he was announced as a provisional candidate by the FijiFirst party last month, but he refused to do so.

We wrote to him at the time we came to know that he had been given a ticket to fight the election.

“He should (have) resigned forthwith because we don’t want to be seen to be allied with any party. We are apolitical and that is it.

“A decision on him will be made on Sunday when we will have a meeting of the national council of the Sabha.”

When asked for his position on the matter, Mr Lal said the council was meeting on Sunday and he would resign immediately if the council members decided so.

“If the national executive council decides that I should resign, I will resign immediately. There is no two ways about it,” he said.

“Sarju Prasad is just a president, he is not the council and the council is made up of 17 members and when these 17 members will meet and ask me, I will resign. I am willing to resign if the council says so.”

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