'Advani may take charge as interim BJP president'
New Delhi: With many senior leaders demanding immediate resignation of BJP president Nitin Gadkari, sources on Tuesday said that BJP veteran LK Advani may soon take over the reins of the party as its interim president.
Party sources said that Advani is likely to be made BJP’s interim president in case Gadkari, facing serious charges of corruption, decides to quit.
The sources also added that Advani taking over the reins of the party will be part of a formula being discussed at the moment by senior leaders to save it from further embarrassment till a new leader is elected.
Any decision on Nitin Gadkari will be taken only after Diwali, the sources added.
The sources, however, said the possibility of Advani becoming the interim president is remote since the BJP’s parent organisation the Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh (RSS) is strongly opposed to the idea and wants Gadkari to finish his first term.
The speculations, in this regard, were triggered after BJP leader and noted criminal lawyer Ram Jethmalani today renewed his attack on Gadkari.
Jethmalani, who made a blistering attack on the Nagpur leader, also said that he has no moral authority to continue on his post in the wake serious graft allegations made against him.
Speaking to reporters in the national capital, Jethmalani said, “I thought Mr Gadkari would resign voluntarily or at least publicly offer to quit till his name is cleared. Unfortunately, he has not done so. This has forced me to express my views on him and let the whole country know what I feel about him.”
He also claimed that he was in touch with three top BJP leaders Yashwant Sinha, Jaswant Singh and Shatrughan Sinha, who share his views that Gadkari should quit as party chief.
Jethmalani, while maintaining that ‘resignation is not an admission of guilt’ said that Gadkari lacks the leadership skills and should not dream of becoming the Prime Minister of India in future.
“Gadkari should be out of the office while the probe is still on against him and return to the BJP fold till his name is cleared. Gadkari does not deserve a second term as he lacks leadership skills and has no time for the party.”
Jethmalani also cleared that he will not quit the party, like his son, because it would send a wrong signal.
“I will not quit the party at this juncture since the country needs a strong opposition, which BJP can give,” he added.
He also slammed Gadkari for not meeting him so far.
Meanwhile, the BJP Core Group is expected to take up the issue when it meets this evening.