Uma flexes muscle
AT AN impressive show of strength in New Delhi's Ramlila Ground, where she paraded several backward and dalit leaders in her support, expelled BJP leader Uma Bharti announced on Tuesday that she would launch a new avtar of the saffron party in Varanasi on April 30.india Updated: Mar 22, 2006 12:47 IST
AT AN impressive show of strength in New Delhi's Ramlila Ground, where she paraded several backward and dalit leaders in her support, expelled BJP leader Uma Bharti announced on Tuesday that she would launch a new avtar of the saffron party in Varanasi on April 30.
"I have decided to draw out the 'atma' of the BJP — which resides in lakhs of its workers and in the ideology of Shyama Prasad Mukherjee, Deen Dayal Upadhyay and Mahatma Gandhi — and leave behind the rotting soulless body at 11 Ashok Road," she told the cheering crowd.
The BJP lost no time in hitting back. President Rajnath Singh suspended the party's veteran Dalit leader, Sangh Priya Gautam, in the evening for participating in the rally. He issued a terse warning that indiscipline would not be tolerated.
On Sunday, he had suspended Madan Lal Khurana for expressing his resolve to attend Bharti's 'Janadesh' rally. Bharti and other marginalised party leaders like Khurana, Gautam and West Bengal's Tapan Sikdar attacked the BJP for sidelining its committed mass leaders and handing over its reins to a coterie of "political managers".
At her dramatic best, Bharti deplored that her "baap" A.B. Vajpayee and "dada" L.K. Advani could only sit back and watch helplessly like Mahabharat characters Bhishma Pitamah and Guru Dronacharya while Draupadi was being disrobed in the Kauravas' court.
Bharti managed to present a motley collection of leaders on the dais who expressed support to her proposed party. Khurana lamented that despite his impressive record for the BJP, he had been denied a Rajya Sabha seat again.