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The back story: What really led to M J Akbar's resignation?

The government believes Menaka Gandhi was acting in league with an Opposition party

Business Standard 

MJ Akbar
MJ Akbar

What really led to M J Akbar’s resignation? Women and Child Development Minister announced that a retired judge would head an enquiry, and sent the decision for ratification to the PMO. Till then there was no plan to ask Akbar to step down. But the thought of a minister appearing before a retired judge every day and shaming charges about his personal conduct being traded publicly, led the government to ask him to step down.

Later, a committee headed by Home Minister Rajnath Singh was created to reject Menaka Gandhi's recommendation. The government believes Gandhi was acting in league with an Opposition party — no prizes for guessing which one.

Last-minute cancellation

If there is one person who doesn’t give up, it is the ousted Vishva Hindu Parishad leader, Pravin Togadiya, once Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s best friend. Togadiya was in Varanasi recently and charged that the fuss the Bharatiya Janata Party is making now over the Ram Mandir is all humbug: If it had wanted to, it could have passed a law in Parliament and built the temple. Just like depositing Rs 1.5 million in every Indian’s bank account, this too was a ‘chunavi jumla’.

Interestingly, Togadiya had a function in Varanasi that was cancelled at the last moment. And no prizes for guessing whose constituency Varanasi is! He was accompanied by the Shankaracharya of Kashi Sumeru Peeth Swami Narendranand Saraswati, who is publicly critical of Modi. Saraswati charged that Togadiya’s flight was deliberately delayed to prevent him from addressing the function. What is Togadiya going to do during the elections? Watch this space.

First Published: Sat, November 03 2018. 19:22 IST
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