Swamy spares none: How Vajpayee became target of his attack

Updated on Jun 28, 2016 05:28 PM IST

BJP’s tallest leader Atal Bihari Vajpayee was never lucky with Swamy, who attacked Vajpayee mercilessly, not even sparing his personal life. There are several articles still online that talk about Swamy’s comments against Vajpayee in the Tamil weekly Kumudham in 1997.

Rajya Sabha MP and senior BJP leader Subramanian Swamy(PTI Photo)
Rajya Sabha MP and senior BJP leader Subramanian Swamy(PTI Photo)
Hindustan Times | By, New Delhi

On his erstwhile Janata Party’s website, Subramanian Swamy described himself as “some kind of Clint Eastwood who single-handedly can destroy someone, or at least his reputation.”

He almost did so in his recent attacks senior government officials, before Prime Minister Narendra Modi stepped in with a stern warning. “This fondness for publicity is never going to do any good to the nation,” the PM said on Monday.

Read: PM Modi snubs Swamy over fondness for publicity, calls Rajan patriot

On Tuesday, Swamy started his day tweeting, “Pratha Smaran to all PTs (patriotic tweeple). Jai Sri Ram!” leaving Twitterati wondering if that was his response to the PM saying RBI governor Raghuram Rajan was “no less patriotic that of any of us”.

Swamy’s other tweet said, “The world is in general equilibrium. A small change in one parameter effects changes in all variables. So Krishna advised: Sukh Dukhe.....” The BJP and the government can perhaps breathe easy for a few days with the hope that the PM’s antidote will have its effects.

Swamy is credited for engineering the fall of the first NDA government that lasted just 13 days in 1998. He arranged a meeting of J Jayalalithaa and Sonia Gandhi—two leaders who later turned into his bitter rivals—to not support the NDA government.

BJP’s tallest leader Atal Bihari Vajpayee was never lucky with Swamy, who attacked Vajpayee mercilessly, not even sparing his personal life. There are several articles still online that talk about Swamy’s comments against Vajpayee in the Tamil weekly Kumudham in 1997.

“In Delhi the Japanese external affairs minister had organised a party. Vajpayee, who was present there as India’s external affairs minister, was drunk. I was also invited for that dinner. I was shocked to see the external affairs minister fully intoxicated...” he wrote in an issue dated March 20, 1997.

In another occasion, according to articles, the economist-turned politician described Vajpayee as a “cunning man” and even raised doubts if Vajpayee was a police informer during the Quit India movement.

Here are more comments by Swamy on Vajpayee published in Outlook magazine on March 23, 1998:

1. “Vajpayee could not stomach the fame I got as an ‘Emergency hero’. Further, he was desperately trying to cover the humiliation of his all-out surrender before Indira.

2. “Though Charan Singh got a bad name for pulling down the Morarji government, the real culprits are Vajpayee and Ramakrishna Hegde. A shocked Morarji resigned and withdrew from the public life. In fact, on that day, Hegde and Vajpayee should have quit public life.”

3. “Morarji and Charan Singh are like Kaikeyee of the Ramayana. In the Janata Ramayana, Kooni’s role was played by Vajpayee.”

No wonder that while Vajpayee was at the helm of affairs, Swamy never got a chance to enter the BJP.

Vajpayee is long out of politics. His national security adviser Brajesh Mishra has passed away. But Swamy’s radar remains active.

In the Rajya Sabha during a high-decibel debate on the AgustaWestland scam, Swamysaid, “They gave him (Brajesh Mishra) Padma Vibhushan, one less than Bharat Ratna. I was just wondering as to what was the service that required him to be given such a high honour. One day, I will discover it.”

Swamy, according to BJP sources, does meticulous planning before attacking anyone with facts and figures. But during the AgustaWestland debate earlier this year, Congress leader Anand Sharma had to correct him, saying chopper trials were conducted in the United Kingdom and not Italy.

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