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Expelled BJP MPs may be removed from the party
K G Suresh in New Delhi | January 10, 2006 00:29 IST
Taking a tough line on corruption, new Bharatiya Janata Party President Rajnath Singh has made up his mind to remove all six members expelled from the Parliament in the cash-for-query scam from the party as well.
Singh is expected to discuss the issue with former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Leaders of Opposition in Lok Sabha and Rajya Sabha L K Advani and Jaswant Singh respectively in this regard, highly placed party sources told PTI.
"He (Singh) is very clear that they should go out. There should be no ambiguity in his message that corruption and indiscipline will not be tolerated. He wants their case as an example, as a warning for the party leaders and cadres", a senior party leader said.
A final decision on the fate of the MPs is expected to be announced shortly, the sources said.
While Chhatrapal Singh Lodha from Orissa was expelled from the Rajya Sabha on the recommendations on the Ethics Committee headed by Karan Singh, the BJP members expelled from the Lower House were Anna Saheb M K Patil, Y G Mahajan, Pradeep Gandhi, Suresh Chandel and Chandra Pratap Singh.
While the party had initially taken a moral high suspending all the accused MPs from the BJP Parliamentary Party and even recommended their suspension from the Parliament, its leader V K Malhotra gave a dissent note in the Lok Sabha committee, headed by Pawan Kumar Bansal which probed the matter, saying "due procedure" was not followed in recommending their expulsion.
However, when the expulsion of the MPs came up for voting in the Lok Sabha, Advani sprang a surprise terming their act as "stupidity" and asserting that the "punishment was not in proportion to the crime".
Several party leaders are understood to have conveyed to Singh their unhappiness over the party's stand and felt that "the move was not in tune with the public mood".
"We began on a positive note by being the first to suspend them but ended up projecting that we were shielding the corrupt, defending the indefensible", said a leader.
"Even the Bahujan Samaj Party, which blames the Manuvadis for all the ills, took no time in expelling its MP from the party. Then why are we seen to be condoning it?" asked a senior Rajya Sabha member.
The new BJP chief, he said, was aware that his message against corruption and indiscipline would sound hollow so long as these MPs remain in the party.
Singh is understood to be having the full backing of the RSS in his approach towards the expelled MPs, the sources said.