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BJP asks Raje to resign
Published on 2 Sep. 2009 1:07 AM IST
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Hoping to resolve the prickly problem of its defiant Rajasthan leader, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is waiting for Vasundhara Raje to recover from her illness and resign as leader of opposition in the state. A day after the former Rajasthan chief minister conveyed to the party leadership that she was unwell and could not submit her resignation, party leader M. Venkaiah Naidu sought to play down all speculations about Raje’s health. “All media reports (that she is not actually sick) are speculative and not true. She is actually unwell. We hope that once she recovers, she will abide by the party’s directive and resign,” Naidu told reporters after a meeting of senior party leaders at president Rajnath Singh’s residence. “She has written a letter informing about her health and that she will need to rest for a week,” he said, adding that Raje had expressed her regrets about this. Besides Naidu and Rajnath Singh, the meeting was attended by leader of opposition in the Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley and deputy leader of the party in the Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj. Raje had reportedly reached the capital Monday to submit her resignation but did not do so and conveyed to the party leadership that she was unwell. Raje, who is being blamed for the BJP’s debacle in the Lok Sabha elections in the state and earlier in the assembly elections, was summoned to Delhi after days of haggling in the wake of party chief Rajnath Singh asking her to quit. She sent her son Dushyant Singh to meet Venkaiah Naidu, who is handling the “Rajasthan crisis”. A senior party leader, who is part of the efforts to defuse the ongoing crisis in the oarty’s Rajasthan unit, told IANS: “Vasundhara Raje has conveyed she is not well, probably she has viral fever; so she won’t be able to meet party leaders and submit her resignation immediately.” Raje had initially refused to resign, arguing that she alone could not be held responsible for the poll debacle. Over 50 of the BJP’s 78 legislators in Rajasthan came down to Delhi Aug 14 and met Rajnath Singh. They shouted slogans outside party veteran L.K. Advani’s residence after he refused to meet them. Finally, sources said, a compromise formula was worked out under which Raje would resign but on certain conditions - that she be given a plum organisational post, her successor in Rajasthan should be of her choice and two MLAs suspended for backing her be reinstated in the party. Accordingly, she was to quit after the conclusion of the state assembly session Friday. BJP war won’t affect Maharashtra: Shiv Sena The Shiv Sena Tuesday said the factionalism in the Bharatiya Janata Party, its alliance partner, would not effect the performance of the coalition in the Maharashtra assembly elections. “The factionalism in the BJP would have no impact on our prospects in Maharashtra,” Shiv Sena leader Sanjay Raut told IANS. Raut said since “Shiv Sena is the bigger party in the coalition (in that state), the BJP’s internal politics would not hamper our prospects.” He said the seat sharing formula with the BJP for the 288 assembly seats in the state has been finalised. “The alliance has almost been finalised and Shiv Sena is a bigger party here, so, we will contest on 177 seats and BJP will get 111 seats,” he said. In the 2004 assembly elections, BJP had won 54 seats from the 111 seats it contested, while the Sena had contested 163 seats and won 62. Elections in Maharashtra will be held Oct 13 and the votes would be counted Oct 22.

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