The BJP’s rather full-throated attack in Parliament on Tuesday on the controversial land deals involving Congress president Sonia Gandhi’s son-in-law, Robert Vadra, marked a step forward from its previous positioning on the issue.
Also, the party’s plan appeared to be to ensure that it raised the decibel level in the two Houses but, at the same time, not appear to stand in the way of Parliament taking up the food security bill, lest it earned the blame from the Congress for standing in the way of a key pro-poor legislation.
The main opposition party’s decision, finalised at its MPs’ meet, was to keep up the momentum of its anti-Congress drive, which has seen a spike since BJP’s principal face for the Lok Sabha polls, Narendra Modi, began to pitch for an aggressive ‘oust-UPA’ campaign.
As decided by the party’s strategists, top BJP leader Yashwant Sinha gave notice to Lok Sabha speaker Meira Kumar seeking suspension of the question hour.
In a no-holds barred attack, Sinha minced no words in describing Vadra as “a highly-connected person who has learnt the art of making hundreds of crores without going to any business school or making any investment.”
He also articulated the new BJP line that the Supreme Court should monitor an investigation into his land deals in the Congress-ruled Haryana.
In October 2012, when Aam Admi Party leader Arvind Kejrwal made allegations against Vadra on his dealings with DLF, the BJP had limited itself to demanding an inquiry into the matter.
But this time, senior BJP leaders agreed for a more strident approach, keeping in mind the criticism earlier that the party was rather soft on the issue fearing a counter attack from the Congress on their own kith and kin.
They also decided that even if the Congress was certain not to let the issue come up in Parliament, the BJP should make its point.
In the Rajya Sabha, the BJP saw political gain from chairman Hamid Ansari’s ire at the opposition for raising the Vadra issue.