Senior BJP leader Jaswant Singh’s mission to Samajwadi Party leaders was his own initiative. No central leader was aware of his visit until the media broke the story.
Later, Jaswant told a top BJP leader, who got in touch with him to find out about his visit, that he had felt “strongly” to make an attempt to convince Mulayam Singh Yadav and Amar Singh not to back the UPA government on the Indo-US nuclear deal.
Jaswant did not think that he had caused any embarrassment to BJP by visiting Amar Singh’s house. Nor did he think that he should have consulted the BJP leadership. Jaswant’s office did not return calls from the media.
Though the party leaders do not take his visit amiss, they have not stopped wondering why he chose a day the media highlighted the latter’s claim that he had come with a plan a year ago to make Mulayam the Prime Minister in lieu of his party’s support for Bhairon Singh Shekhawat as President.
“Jaswant Singh has strong views on the deal. So he thought he should convince them (SP leaders),” said Venkaiah Naidu, a senior BJP leader in a bid to explain why he thought he met Mulayam.
Naidu said there is nothing wrong in his meeting the SP leaders. He, however, parried queries on whether the visit by the senior leader was an official move of the party. But he was critical of what he called the drama being enacted by the SP leaders under the banner of the UNPA.