The Chhattisgarh Congress has suspended a state legislator for making derogatory remarks against party Vice-President Rahul Gandhi, PTI reported. However, the agency also reported that Rai was also considered a supporter of Ajit Jogi’s Chhattisgarh Janata Congress Party, and was considered a Congress rebel. Jogi had quit the Congress earlier and started his own party earlier this year.

After his suspension, Rai said, “I was told the action has been taken against me for making comments against Rahul Gandhi (in the past). I can’t call a donkey a horse. If the party feels my observation is wrong then either it is blind or (is) acting like a blind person”. He added that the move had exposed the party’s “anti-tribal” face, and that he was “free now”.

The decision was made by the state Congress’ Coordination Committee meeting, where its members unanimously voted to suspend Rai. They also recommended he be expelled from the Chhattisgarh Congress. The state’s General Secretary in-charge BK Hariprasad, however, said Rai would contest the 2018 Assembly election under Chhattisgarh Congress president Bhupesh Baghel.