Tuesday, July 03, 2007


C no to PIL against Pratibha baffles BJP
Tuesday, 03 July , 2007, 15:29

New Delhi: The Supreme Court's rejection of a petition challenging nomination of UPA-Left Presidential candidate Pratibha Patil has come as a blow to the BJP's campaign over allegations against her, with a senior party leader describing it as a "big embarrassment".

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The leader, who did not want to be named, expressed fears that the court's dismissal of the plea could take the steam out of the party's campaign against Patil.

"It is an embarrassment for us. A big one rather. " he said.

Former BJP legal cell convenor Satpal Jain, who is now in charge of party affairs in Himachal Pradesh, is a leading figure in the NDA campaign for vice-president Bhairon Singh Shekhawat.

A former aide of senior BJP leader L K Advani, Sudheendra Kulkarni last month organised a press conference for a woman, who accused Patil of shielding her brother in connection with a murder case.

BJP spokesman Ravi Shankar Prasad, also a lawyer, submitted a petition to the EC by Advani in which the former deputy prime minister said presidential candidates too should be asked to disclose their assets.

"It will be a bigger blow if the EC too rejects our petitions. There is no dearth of experienced leaders in the BJP. Under-utilisation of that experience led to the party's defeat in UP and Goa. The party should use it maximum in these presidential elections," a BJP leader said.

Earlier in the day, the Supreme Court rejected a lawyer's petition seeking cancellation of Patil's nomination, saying allegations against her were not backed by material documents.


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