Shatru in Amar’s company

A month after reports of a tussle between BJP leader Shatrughan Sinha and party spokesman Ravi Shankar Prasad for the Patna Saheb Lok Sabha seat ticket...

Written by Santosh Singh | Patna | Published:February 20, 2009 12:07 am

A month after reports of a tussle between BJP leader Shatrughan Sinha and party spokesman Ravi Shankar Prasad for the Patna Saheb Lok Sabha seat ticket,the former was on Thursday seen sharing dais with Samajwadi Party general secretary Amar Singh and actor Sanjay Dutt here.

Sinha may call it a meeting for “cancer cause”,but his bold (read defiant) gesture is being seen as a “tactic” to pressurise the party into giving him the ticket from Patna Saheb seat or else be ready to witness a repeat of the Kalyan Singh episode.

Last week,Sinha attended the first marriage anniversary of Sanjay Dutt and Manyata. According to a source,Dutt and Sinha met recently on a Mumbai-Delhi flight and chatted for a long time. Moreover,Sinha’s friendship with Amar Singh is well known. Only recently,Amar Singh had openly said that SP’s doors were open for the Bihari Babu. Sinha,on his part,had publicly defended Samajwadi Party chief Mulayam Yadav in the disproportionate assets case and lambasted the CBI for “showing allegiance to the ruling UPA”.

On Thursday,speaking at the inauguration of alternative treatment centre and anti-tobacco meeting at Mahavir Cancer Institute in Patna,Amar Singh praised Sinha,calling him a “face in the crowd of communal BJP”. “Shatruji is a blend of saint and child and beyond any party line,” said Singh.

In turn,Sinha said that there can be no politics in matters of health,and good work does not know party affiliations. “Since I attended the function,Amar Singh refrained from anti-L K Advani remarks,” said Sinha.

BJP leaders,however,are not amused over Sinha sharing the dais with political rival Amar Singh. Senior BJP leader and third contender for the Patna Saheb seat R K Sinha said: “BJP workers are mature and cannot be beguiled with such gimmicks and blackmailing. Such meeting can only harm a prospective candidate.”

When asked about the meeting,Sinha said: “People should not take any political meaning out of this meet. Sanjay’s father Sunil Dutt championed the cause of cancer patients. I am also associated with the cause and so am here.”

BJP spokesperson Kiran Ghai also maintained that “Sinha and Sanjay Dutt are long-time friends”. Asked if Sinha can do a Kalyan if not given a ticket,Ghai said: “We hope he does not do so.”

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