New Delhi: Although jittery over the adverse fallout of the induction of ex-minister in Mayawati’s cabinet and NHRM scam accused Babu Singh Kushwaha into the party, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) appeared to be in two minds on Wednesday over retaining him.
Addressing a press conference here, party spokesperson Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said, “Strong action must be taken against anyone who is accused of corruption, but why has the CBI taken action against a person (Kushwaha) after he joined the BJP... was the scam unearthed in the last 24 hours?”
Importantly, Naqvi did not give Kushwaha a clean chit but chose to target Mayawati. “How can you act against pawns while the maharani of corruption remains free?”
On the possibility of Kushwaha being given a party ticket, he said, “When there are elections many people join the party but it is not mandatory that we will give tickets to each one of them.”
“BJP is not a suraksha kawach for the corrupt but the Congress is indulging in selective action based on its political requirements…we will not allow the Congress and BSP to divert attention from their corruption,” he said, adding that Rahul Gandhi, Digvijay Singh and Mayawati have forged a ‘deal’.
As per reports, differences have emerged in the BJP over ‘tainted’ Kushwaha’s entry into the party, especially in view of the party’s vocal stand against corruption.
Sources said that the decision to induct Kushwaha was taken by party’s state unit in consultation with president Nitin Gadkari without taking many senior leaders including LK Advani into confidence.
Apart from Advani, many other senior BJP leaders are upset and angry over the matter. Party leaders feel that by inducting the former Uttar Pradesh minister, the plan to target the Bahujan Samaj Party and the Congress on the issue of corruption has become untenable.
A final decision on Kushwaha’s future may be taken at a crucial meeting of the party currently underway at Gadkari’s residence.
Kushwaha is facing a CBI inquiry in the NRHM scam in which two CMOs were murdered while Deputy CMO Y S Sachan, who was arrested for his alleged involvement in their murders, was found dead in mysterious circumstances in jail. Today, the CBI conducted multiple raids at Kushwaha’s residences.
Singh was the Labour Minister and was removed after UP Lokayukta served him a notice for allegedly committing financial irregularities.
What apparently evoked BJP’s interest in him was his considerable clout in the Bundelkhand region which is otherwise known as a BSP bastion.
However, it appears that the gains are minuscule compared to the damage done to party’s image.