?Uma may float new party on Sankranti?

EXPELLED BHARATIYA Janata Party leader Uma Bharti might float a new political party on Makar Sankranti, an auspicious day for Hindus, said former Union Minister Prahlad Singh Patel on Sunday.

india Updated: Jan 02, 2006 00:59 IST

EXPELLED BHARATIYA Janata Party leader Uma Bharti might float a new political party on Makar Sankranti, an auspicious day for Hindus, said former Union Minister Prahlad Singh Patel on Sunday.

Patel said Bharti would announce her future political plans after completing the Ram-Roti Yatra in Ayodhya on January 14.

Talking to mediapersons, Patel, a close associate of Bharti, said talks were continuing with various political parties and social organisations.

He said the Ram-Roti Yatra got an overwhelming response in the Bundelkhand region of Uttar Pradesh. A large number of people, cutting across party and caste lines, turned out to welcome Bharti in Mahoba, Hamirpur and Banda districts, he added.

The leaders of the BJP, the Rashtriya Kranti Dal, the Jan Sangh, the VHP, regional political parties and sadhus joined the yatra in these districts, he said.
On January 4, the yatra will reach Fatehpur and Rae Bareli on January 6. After passing through Sultanpur, it will enter Faizabad on January 11.

The yatris would reach Ayodhya on January 13 and have ‘darshan’ of Ramlala on January 14, Patel said. To a question, he said the BJP contested the Vidhan Sabha election in Madhya Pradesh on the development plank and was able to wrest power from the Congress.

Calling Uma the symbol of BJP resurgence, Patel pointed out that one of the most powerful Chief Ministers Digvijay Singh had to bite the dust.
Bharti resigned from the chief minister’s post after a court in Karnataka issued a warrant against her.

On the other hand, a warrant had been issued by a district court in Madhya Pradesh against that State’s present Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chauhan. But, Chauhan was continuing on the post and the BJP leadership was mum on the issue.

Patel made it clear Bharti played no role in exposing the sex scandal involving former BJP general secretary Sanjay Joshi.

Joshi should expose those who were hatching a conspiracy against him, said Patel, adding an inquiry should be ordered by the government into the matter.
In comparison to UP, Madhya Pradesh was backward and underdeveloped, he said, adding that was why development became an election issue there.
In UP, criminalisation of politics and casteism were the main issues, he said, adding that after completing the yatra, Bharti would launch a movement on public issues in Madhya Pradesh.

Patel condemned “double standards” adopted by BJP over the cash-for-question scam involving half-a-dozen of its MPs. In a recently-concluded conference the BJP leaders condemned corruption and urged the party leadership to adopt a tough stand on the issue, he said.

First Published: Jan 02, 2006 00:59 IST