While BSP leaders rejoiced after Mayawati got a breather from the Supreme Court in the disproportionate assets case, reactions from her rivals were muffled.
In Lucknow, Congress spokesman Ram Kumar Bhargava said the party has always welcomed court decisions. In Delhi, party spokesperson Renuka Chowdhury downplayed the development. “We cannot speculate on what the SC has said.” Union law minister Salman Khurshid also refused to comment saying he was yet to read the verdict.
While SP national general secretary Ram Asre Kushwaha refused to comment on the verdict, party leader Shahid Siddiqui attacked the CBI. “This is not Mayawati’s victory but the CBI’s defeat, as it committed technical errors. It was supposed to investigate irregularities in the Taj Corridor. It, however, initiated a probe into her assets.”
Refuting the BSP allegation that Mayawati had been framed by the BJP during the NDA regime, the BJP said it should not be taken as the final decision. “In 2003, the NDA government was there only for a few months. Since then the UPA has been in power for eight years, which Mayawati has been supporting,” said BJP leader Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi.
In Delhi, BJP leaders said the verdict should not be construed as a grant of “integrity certificate” to Mayawati as the “irregularities” in the case remained and those responsible could not escape blame.