The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Sunday suspended Ram Jethmalani with immediate effect for daring the party to act against him on the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) chief’s appointment issue, saying it was gross indiscpline.
A defiant Jethmalani, an eminent lawyer and a member of Parliament in Rajya Sabha, who had recently demanded party chief Nitin Gadkari’s resignation in the wake of charges of alleged dubious funding of the latter’s Purti Group, said, “Nobody has the guts to take action against me”.
Jethmalani invited BJP wrath after attacking the party for criticising the appointment of new CBI Director Ranjit Sinha.
Addressing a press conference here, BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain said Jethmalani had opposed the letter written to Prime Minister Manmohan Singh by Sushma Swaraj, Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha and Arun Jaitley, Leader of the Opposition in the Rajya Sabha, asking him to keep the CBI Director’s appointment in abeyance.
“Jethmalani’s remarks are meant to help the Congress,” Hussain said, adding it was an act of “gross indiscipline”. “BJP President Nitin Gadkari has viewed his remarks and today’s statement very seriously... and decided to suspend him from the party with immediate effect,” he said.
The BJP Parliamentary Board will meet here tomorrow at 4.30 pm to take forward the suspension process.
In Mumbai, Jethmalani said many in the party shared his views but “few had the capacity” to express their views openly.
He, however, clarified that his views on Sinha’s appointment were his own, and not of BJP, the paty in which “I am a small person.”
“If there is any action taken against me, I will welcome it but I don’t think anyone has the guts to take any action against me,” he told reporters on the sidelines of a launching of a book written by a city-based journalist.
On Saturday, Jethmalani had attacked the party for criticising the appointment of new CBI director and said the government’s decision has “averted national calamity”.