An apparently embarrassed BJP on Wednesday said it will not give ticket to tainted former Uttar Pradesh minister Babu Singh Kushwaha, against whom CBI conducted raids in the NRHM scam case, and made it clear that he will not be its star campaigner.
The party's announcement came at a press conference amidst reports that senior leaders including LK Advani had expressed unhappiness over the induction of Kushwaha, an OBC leader who was sacked by chief minister Mayawati at the height of the scam and was expelled from the party in November.
Sources said senior leaders were upset over Kushwaha's induction and felt it could have been avoided.
However, the party decided to go on the offensive instead of repeating a DP Yadav-like episode when it admitted the Western UP leader ahead of the 2004 elections only to remove him within days.
During his tenure as state family welfare minister two chief medical officers were murdered, a deputy CMO died mysteriously in jail and fraud worth thousands of crores was detected in the implementation of the National Rural Health Mission in Uttar Pradesh.
"We induct various people into the party ahead of elections. It is not necessary we give them a ticket. In this case, the party is not considering granting him a ticket," said BJP vice president Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi.
He faced a barrage of questions on the admission of Kushwaha into the party on Tuesday alongwith another former minister Badshah Singh, who was also sacked by Mayawati in October after he was indicted by lokayukta NK Mehrotra in a land grab case.