The BJP, after suspending Ram Jethmalani, has issued a show cause notice to the senior lawyer asking him why he should not be expelled from the party for six years for his recent statements against party president Nitin Gadkari.
He will have to reply in ten days.
The BJP’s Parliamentary committee meeting which was chaired by party chief Gadkari met this evening and had decided on this course of action.
“The Parliamentary board confirmed the decision to suspend him for his indiscipline and anti-party activities and issue him with a show cause notice asking him to explain why he should not be expelled from the party for a period of six years,” said BJP spokesman Ananth Kumar.
He added that the meeting had been called only to confirm Gadkari’s decision to suspend Jethmalani, and no other matters had been taken up for discussion.
On Sunday, Gadkari suspended Jethmalani for not toeing the party line and going against its stand on several issues, using his executive powers.
The significant factor here is that all the senior BJP leaders have agreed with the decision to suspend him. This is an important show of unity at a time when the party was seen to be speaking with many voices.
A CNN-IBN report earlier speculated that some BJP leaders were likely to seek action against Shatrughan Sinha at the parliamentary party meet. Sinha, along with Yashwant Sinha and Jethmalani, had also been pressing for Gadkari’s resignation over the allegations of corruption against him.
Sinha had also sided with the lawyer again over the appointment of Ranjit Sinha as new CBI director, saying there was no ground to initiate disciplinary action against Jethmalani.
Meanwhile Jethmalani said he had written a letter to BJP chief Nitin Gadkari on Monday but refused to disclose its contents.
“I have written a letter to the party (Bharatiya Janata Party) president. (But) I am not in a position to reveal its content,” he told reporters.
“You can get it (the content) from them… I have told them (the BJP) that you are entitled to release it to the press. I am under the oath of secrecy until the letter reaches the BJP president,” he added.
It is believed that he had reiterated his call for Gadkari’s resignation in the letter, but Kumar did not mention its contents during the BJP press conference today.