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BJP lets Shanta Kumar off the hook
Onkar Singh in New Delhi | March 21, 2003 16:03 IST
The Bharatiya Janata Party high command has decided not to take any punitive action against Rural Development Minister Shanta Kumar for his alleged anti-party comments in the media soon after the party lost power in the state.
Kumar had said that the non-performance of the P K Dhumal government had gone against the party in the assembly elections. He was chairman of the party campaign committee.
The party high command comprising of Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Deputy Prime Minister Lal Kishenchand Advani and party president Venkaiah Naidu had taken strong exception to the statement made by Shanta Kumar and had served him with a notice asking him to explain his conduct.
Kumar met Vajpayee and Advani and explained his stand. He submitted his explanation in writing to the party president Venkaiah Naidu on Thursday.
He was directed to see party general secretary in charge of the organisation Sanjay Joshi later in the day.
Joshi and Kumar had a prolonged meeting and the two discussed ways to strengthen the party network in Himachal Pradesh.
Joshi, when asked if the party had dropped disciplinary action against Shanta Kumar, said, "I am afraid I would not be in a position to tell you anything."
Sources close to Venkaiah Naidu said that the party is not interested in precipitating matters in Himachal Pradesh by taking action against Shanta Kumar after what had happened in Jharkhand last week.
More reports from Himachal Pradesh