While BJP patriarch LK Advani may have launched his anti-corruption Rath Yatra to corner the government over corruption, the turn of events is forcing the party to fend charges of corruption against its own leaders.
On Saturday, the Lokayukta court sent former Karnataka chief minister BS Yeddyurappa to judicial custody over corruption charges.
Taking the opportunity to attack the BJP, Congress spokesperson Manish Tewari said it was “ironical” that Yeddyuruppa was fighting for bail in a corruption case at a time when the BJP was undertaking an anti-corruption yatra across the country.
“Perhaps it would have been far more appropriate if the anti-corruption yatra would have been first undertaken in Karnataka, Uttarakhand, and Punjab where BJP ministers and functionaries have been indicted on charges of corruption,” Tewari said.
BJP spokesperson JP Nadda said: “It is a legal issue. The party will fight the issue legally. We will be there legally but the BJP will adopt zero tolerance towards corruption.”
Asked about the corruption charges against Yeddyurappa in Patna two days back, Advani had said, “The Lokayukta had indicted the Karnataka CM and the party replaced him. This shows all the more that we are the ones capable to speak out against corruption.”
BSY’s arrest comes a day after the party hurriedly suspended its Satna media in-charge Shyam Gupta over charges of distributing money to journalists for the coverage of the yatra in MP. This happened after Advani took note of the outcry over the attempted “bribery” and asked MP’s BJP chief Prabhat Jha to probe the matter and take strict action.
The yatra may have begun well for Advani, with people thronging the route on Day 1 to see the veteran leader, but he will have to take care that the spotlight does not turn back to the BJP.