M A I N   N E W S

BJP in a spot over Uma Bharti
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, August 20
Trapped in a web of its own making, the Bharatiya Janata Party Parliamentary Board is meeting here on Monday to decide the fate of Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Uma Bharti, who has reportedly been issued a non-bailable warrant against her by a Hubli court.

“Party President M. Venkaiah Naidu has convened the meeting to discuss all aspects of the case related to the hoisting of the National Flag on the Idgah grounds in Hubli,” parliamentary party spokesperson Sushma Swaraj told reporters here.

The BJP is faced with a serious dilemma as it has been raising a lot of noise on the issue of tainted ministers in the UPA government and now if it fails to take a stand on the Uma Bharti issue then it would lose credibility, a leader said.

Asked whether the party could ask Ms Bharti to step down, Ms Swaraj said: “She (Uma) has already conveyed to the party her willingness to accept any decision the party takes. All issues will be discussed at the parliamentary board.”

Ms Swaraj, however, said there was “no similarity” between the cases against “tainted ministers” and the Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister.

“All cases against her pertain to the hoisting of a National Flag. Despite that, keeping in view the moral grounds, we have convened a meeting of the party parliamentary board to discuss all aspects of the issue,” she said.

Ms Swaraj also pointed out that it was a Congress government in Karnataka and “not that of the BJP or its allies” that had decided to withdraw the case after the peaceful resolution of the Idgah issue.

In 2002, when Ms Bharti was a Central minister, she had received a notice and she had spoken to then Karnataka Chief Minister S. M. Krishna, who assured her that he would personally look into it, she said.

Thereafter, the state government through a notification had withdrawn all cases against the agitationists and appealed to the Judicial Magistrate of Hubli to do so.


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