Debating India


Sinha dropped as BJP spokesperson

Wednesday 29 June 2005, by VYAS*Neena

NEW DELHI: Bharatiya Janata Party president L.K. Advani on Tuesday dropped the former External Affairs Minister, Yashwant Sinha, from the list of party spokespersons.

A terse announcement to this effect was made here by the party general secretary, Arun Jaitley, who together with the Rajya Sabha deputy leader, Sushma Swaraj, continues to be on the newly "reconstituted" list of party spokespersons. Prakash Javadekar and Manvendra Singh continue to be additional party spokespersons.

Party leaders admitted that Mr. Sinha had been dropped for openly criticising the Arjun Munda Government in Jharkhand as "corrupt" and "ineffective".

"How could he continue as party spokesperson when he is criticising a BJP-led government," one leader asked.

Earlier this month, Mr. Sinha gave more than a hint that he could be charting out a political path for himself independent of the BJP when he suggested that if Mr. Advani were to resign as party president - he had resigned following the controversy over his remarks that Jinnah was secular - the same reasons should apply to the post of Leader of Opposition.

Recently, Mr. Jaitley announced that Mr. Sinha had been told to raise party matters only at party forums and not in the media.

Mr. Sinha was told that the party would be making such a statement and he was also asked by Mr. Jaitley whether there was any truth in the "speculation" that he wanted to leave the BJP. The suggestion had been strongly denied by Mr. Sinha.

See online : The Hindu

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