NRI Labour Member Suspended For Insulting Brown

Prasun Sonwalkar/London
NRI Labour Member Suspended For Insulting Brown
Manish Sood, an Indian-origin Labour candidate who lashed out at Gordon Brown as the "worst Prime Minister" Britain has ever had on the eve of the May 6 general elections, has been suspended from the party.

38-year-old Sood, who stood for the Labour party from Norfolk North West seat which was won by Conservative candidate Henry Bellingham, is a councillor from Fosse ward in Leicester.

The party suspended Sood and launched an inquiry against him, and if it is found that he broke any of the Labour's rules he could face sanctions, including expulsion.

Sood said: "I'm stunned and I'm angry. What the party should have done was to give me a safe seat so I could have had the chance to become part of a future government. I can only sit and wait for the investigation to be carried out. It's unfair, though, because I was speaking the truth."

In the May 6 polls, Labour's share of the votes dropped in Norfolk North West from 32.2 per cent to 13.3 per cent, and the party dropped from second place in 2005 to third place.

David Collis, chair of North West Norfolk Constituency Labour Party, said: "From now Mr Sood's association with us has ceased."

The storm over his remark that Brown was the "worst Prime Minister" Britain has ever had caused considerable embarrassment to Brown and the Labour party.

Sood's mother, Manjula Sood, who until recently was Britain's first Asian woman to hold the office of Lord Mayor in Leicester, was distraught at her son's remarks.

She said: "I think he has a lot of anger inside him. I didn't know what his views were until a friend called me and said I should turn on the TV news. When I saw him on screen I felt gutted, I was distraught."

Manjula Sood added: "I was also very angry. The key thing about the Labour party is that you must be loyal. Manish has not been loyal and he has caused trouble with a day to go until a General Election. I am a proud Labour member and Labour councillor. His late father was a proud party member. This is not what we expected of Manish."

Leader of Leicester City Council, Veejay Patel, also criticised Sood's comments.

"The comments Manish made don't represent the Labour party's views. Our party has its own rules and regulations which he appears to have been broken," he said.
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