The BJP’s keenness to draw electoral advantage from Varun Gandhi while at the same time keeping him at arm’s length was again in evidence on Tuesday.
Chhattisgarh chief minister Raman Singh joined the ranks of party leaders who have maintained that Varun, even if he is released from jail, would not be a star campaigner for the party. At the same time, the Vishwa Hindu Parishad and
associated saffron organizations called a bandh in Pilibhit on Wednesday to protest against Varun’s detention under the National Security Act.
Raman Singh announced a list of star BJP campaigners from outside the state from which Varun was conspicuously absent.
Meanwhile, the BSP strongly justified the use of the NSA against Varun. “We will not spare anybody,” said senior leader Satish Chandra Mishra. “Even our own MLA Shekhar Tiwari, who was accused of murdering an engineer was booked under NSA.”