iconimg Thursday, September 03, 2015

HT correspondent, Hindustan Times
New Delhi, January 28, 2008
Former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee did not turn up at the BJP national executive on Sunday. Nor did he send any message this time for the conclave, the first after L.K. Advani’s anointment as Vajpayee’s successor. Party spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad slammed the UPA for not conferring Bharat Ratna on Vajpayee and for “setting a precedent” by giving Padma Vibhushan to External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee.

“We don’t want to politicise the issue. Vajpayeeji has rendered impeccable service to the nation and is an elder statesman who fully deserved the honour. It showed that the government lacked magnanimity and big heart.”

BJP’s Prakash Javadekar said preparations for elections in Karnataka, Meghalaya, Tripura and Nagaland had been discussed. BJP leaders urged the Congress not to put off polls in Karnataka.