Senior BJP leader L K Advani on Sunday refrained from commenting directly on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh's remark in Parliament that he was waiting endlessly to become PM.
But, in his blog, Advani quoted from a former Union home secretary's latest book to show that "except for the BJP, Communist and leftist parties, almost all other political parties in India are family concerns."
"Most of the so-called young MPs and MLAs who are touted as the induction of young and fresh blood in political parties are the sons, sons-in-laws, daughters, daughters-in-law, grand-nephews, uncles and so on of those in power," Advani quoted Madhav Godbole as writing in his book, India's Parliamentary Democracy on Trial.
Advani's reference to Godbole came two days day after senior party leader Arun Jaitley's statement that Dr Singh's remark was not intended for Advani but "was addressing someone else," meaning the Congress first family.
Advani noted Godbole's comment that "Sonia Gandhi, President of the Congress party for the last 12 years and the real power behind the throne in Delhi, is Italian by birth; the speaker of the Lok Sabha, Meira Kumar, and the chairman of the Rajya Sabha, Hamid Ansari, are retired Indian Foreign Service officers, and Manmohan Singh, Prime Minister, is a retired officer of the Indian Economic Service! Who could have imagined that India, with its population of over a billion, would be so bereft of leadership, drawn from the masses, 60 years after practicing parliamentary democracy?"
Advani praised Sushma Swaraj and Jaitley for their performance as Opposition leaders in Parliament in the just-ended budget session, wherein they had taken on the government on the issues of appointment of CVC, demand for a JPC into the 2G scam and cash-for-vote scam.
Advani said the government should have fine-tuned the schedules of Parliament and elections in five states to ensure that the just-concluded budget session had all the sittings.
He felt, "If the government and the Election Commission had had an informal interaction early in January, this situation could have been avoided."