Advani says Lohia respected BJP’s nationalism

First Samajwadi Party president Mulayam Singh Yadav praised senior BJP leader LK Advani on the birth anniversary of socialist ideologue Dr Ram Manohar Lohia on March 23.

Written by Express News Service | Lucknow | Published: April 4, 2013 3:39:02 am

First Samajwadi Party president Mulayam Singh Yadav praised senior BJP leader LK Advani on the birth anniversary of socialist ideologue Dr Ram Manohar Lohia on March 23. On Wednesday,Advani said that Lohia,who is the ideological inspiration of the Samajwadi Party,had great respect for BJP’s philosophy of nationalism.

Addressing the state executive of the BJP in Chitrakoot,Advani said Lohia had also favoured organising a Ramayan mela at the venue of the meeting,called Ramayan Mela Parisar.

The BJP veteran spoke on Lohia at length,taking the gathered BJP leaders and workers by surprise. However,Advani made no reference to the SP leader or his remarks about him.

Advani said that when he had first met Lohia as a journalist,Lohia had said that he was in the Samajwadi Party but he respected the BJP’s philosophy of ‘Rashtravad’. “Lohiaji had said that BJP talks about nationalism and cultural nationalism,but Muslims do not get attracted towards BJP because it writes about ‘Akhand Bharat’ in its poll manifesto,” Advani said.

According to Advani,Lohia had explained that Muslims were worried about the BJP’s concept of ‘Akhand Bharat’,they had an apprehension that if the BJP comes to power at the Centre,India will attack Pakistan to rule there.

“Deen Dayal Upadhyay (BJP ideologue) explained to Lohia that the BJP’s definition of ‘Akhand Bharat’ was a confederation of India and Pakistan. Later both Lohia and Upadhyay had issued a joint statement on it,” Advani said.

He said that about two years back when all members had assembled in Parliament to pay tributes to Lohia on his birth anniversary,Prime Minister Manmohan Singh had asked Advani about the possibilities of creation of the ‘confederation’ that Lohia had talked about. “I told the PM that it was possible in the period of Lohia and later in the BJP government led by Atal Bihari Vajpayee. But now it is almost impossible in the current situation due to the policies of the Congress,” Advani said.

Speaking on the birth anniversary of Lohia in Lucknow,Mulayam had praised Advani and said that the BJP veteran had apprised him that he wants SP government in the state to continue but corruption had increased.

Mulayam had also said,“If Advaniji is saying so,there is an urgent need of a review meeting. Advaniji never speaks a lie. I will ask him the names of corrupt persons in the government.”

On Wednesday,Advani said he had spoken to Mulayam in the Lok Sabha but he had not expected that Mulayam would disclose that in public.

Reacting to Advani’s comment on Lohia,Mulayam said,“It is a normal thing. If a leader of any political party does a good thing we will praise it. Unnecessary hue and cry was raised about my remarks for Advani but no one is after Advani now. Lohia was a great leader and everybody accepts it,” Mulayam claimed.

“I even praise Nehru,Jana Sangh leader Shyama Prasad Mukherjee. They were fine leaders and had great innings and were extraordinary. Nehru’s contribution in the freedom movement cannot be denied. Likewise Jai Prakash Narain was also a great leader,they all made great sacrifices. How can we not praise such great leaders?” Mulayam added.

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