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?Uma outfit not to contest Budhni?

IN WHAT can be music to the ears of Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and the BJP, expelled BJP leader Uma Bharti?s loyalist and former Union minister Prahlad Patel today said that Uma supporters will not field any candidate of their own in Budhni Assembly constituency from where Chouhan is to seek mandate in the impending bye elections.

india Updated: Feb 20, 2006 14:29 IST

IN WHAT can be music to the ears of Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan and the BJP, expelled BJP leader Uma Bharti’s loyalist and former Union minister Prahlad Patel today said that Uma supporters will not field any candidate of their own in Budhni Assembly constituency from where Chouhan is to seek mandate in the impending bye elections.

Dropping enough hints of a three-cornered election, Patel hastily added that they would actively campaign in the Budhni elections against corruption and might support a candidate who fights election on the issue of corruption.

As both the BJP and Congress are A and B teams vis-à-vis corruption, they will support a candidate who has a clean image. “Since our on-going campaign has not taken the shape of a political party so far, we will not rush to fight elections on our own,” Patel said.

Hinting of Bharti’s on-going campaign in the country taking the shape of a new political party by April 30, Patel said Uma Bharti’s ‘Janadesh Yatra’ will conclude on April 30 at Chitrakoot with a huge national convention of Uma supporters. “Umaji’s campaign might take the shape of a political party in that proposed huge meeting,” he said. The name and other
details about the new party will be announced later, he added.

Terming Uma Bharti’s Janadesh Yatra the fourth biggest political movement in the history of the country after Jayaprakash Narain’s movement in the 1970s, former Prime Minister Indira Gandhi’s return to power in 1980 and VP Singh’s revolt against corruption, Patel said the purpose of Bharti’s movement in the country is to provide an alternative political platform to the people of the country who are tired of both the Congress-led coalition and the BJP-led coalition.

“There was a time in the country when the entire politics of the country revolved round anti-Congressism first and later anti-BJPism both of which have miserably failed to provide results.

Stressing that the need of the hour is to provide an alternative political platform to the people, Patel said Uma Bharti’s Janadesh Yatra will have serious connotations in the future politics of the country. The way the Yatra was received by the people of the country clearly shows in which way the wind is blowing, he said.

In reply to a question on the expulsion of four BJP MLAs from the party yesterday including his brother Jalam Singh Patel, Patel said there is dictatorship in the name of discipline in the BJP. “Hakam Singh was not even served a notice,,’ he said. But he said Uma supporters would not do anything to bring down this Government.

This Government will fall due to its own weight. “Our aim is to come to power in the next general elections whenever it comes,” he said. Patel also alleged that the chief minister is gagging the press for giving coverage to Uma Bharti’s Yatra. “The way he is suppressing the press, it is worse than Emergency period,” Patel said.

First Published: Feb 20, 2006 14:29 IST