Apparently realising that it had gone a little too far, the main Opposition BJP is set to distance itself from suspended Congress leader Natwar Singh indicted by the Pathak Authority for his alleged involvement in the Iraqi oil scandal.
BJP sources said that the party would instead mount a powerful attack on the Congress-led government in Parliament on Thursday for what it regards are its "attempts" to absolve the ruling party of the charges of being a beneficiary in Iraqi oil contracts.
BJP leaders Yashwant Sinha and Shatrughan Sinha - along with Samajwadi Party General Secretary Amar Singh and JDU's Digvijay Singh -- stood beside Natwar Singh on Tuesday night as he attacked Prime Minister Manmohan Singh following his suspension from the Congress.
"The party had a strategy which worked successfully. But it cannot come out in support of somebody whom it has forced to quit because of serious allegations of corruption," a BJP leader, who wanted not to be named said.
A sizeable section of the BJP, the leader added, is strongly advocating that the party should quickly distance itself from the suspended Congress leader especially also because of Amar Singh's comments against Mukesh Ambani-headed Reliance Industries, which it regards as motivated by personal interests.
"We now aim to push the Congress on the defensive as the government has not addressed the Volcker charges that the party itself was a non-contractual beneficiary of the Iraqi oil contracts. It has to explain where the oil coupon issued in the Congress' name has gone," the BJP leader said.