Defending Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje openly for the first time since the controversy surrounding the former IPL chief Lalit Modi erupted, the BJP today ruled out her resignation and that of External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj. The BJP seems to have decided to stand by its leaders and face head-on its first major political storm since the formation of the government a year ago despite the Congress threatening to disrupt Parliament’s monsoon session if Swaraj and Raje did not quit.
Rejecting the Opposition’s demand for resignation, BJP spokesman Sudhanshu Trivedi said there was “no technical and legal base to establish any point of impropriety against the two leaders”.
Sources say the decision to back Raje and her son Dushyant Singh was taken after a series of meetings by the party’s top brass. The CBI’s preliminary inquiry against Congress’s Himachal Pradesh Chief Minister Virbhadra Singh in a disproportionate assets case came as a shot in the arm for the saffron party, which is now planning to use it to counter the opposition party’s mounting attack against the BJP’s Rajasthan CM Raje and Union Minister Swaraj.
Demanding Virbhadra Singh’s immediate resignation, the BJP today sought a public apology from Congress president Sonia Gandhi and vice-president Rahul Gandhi for “allowing scams” and “promoting corruption”.
The party support for Raje and her son came on the day the Rajasthan CM cancelled her visit to Anandpur Sahib where she was to share stage with party president Amit Shah and Home Minister Rajnath Singh. Sources said action, if any, against Swaraj and Raje would be taken once the Prime Minister was over with his ambitious International Yoga Day celebrations.