Former finance minister Yashwant Sinha has claimed that he has failed to get an appointment with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and, therefore, he would rather express his views in public instead of making attempts to meet anyone in the government. “I sought an appointment with Prime Minister Narendra Modi 13 months ago to discuss various issues, but I haven’t got it so far. Since I haven’t got time, I have decided now I will not meet anyone in the government. Whatever I have to say, I will say openly in public,” Sinha is quoted as saying by PTI.
Sinha, who has had open disagreements with the government and the Bhatratiya Janata Party (BJP) in the past, again took a potshot at his party on Wednesday, saying “today’s BJP is not like the one in the days of Atalji and Advaniji”. In those days, even a “small-time worker could go to Delhi and meet party president Advani without an appointment, who has targeted the government on many occasions recently,” he added.
“Now even senior and important leaders don’t get an appointment with the party president. So, I was not surprised when I did not get an appointment for 13 months,” the veteran BJP lader said.
According to PTI, he also criticised the party for not according due importance to senior leaders like L K Advani. Referring to a photograph of BJP president Amit Shah offering a laddoo to the prime minister, Sinha said, “In that photo, Rajnath Singh, Ananth Kumar, Sushma Swaraj and others are visible. But Advaniji is not seen even at the back. Now he has become an “aam” (ordinary) worker from “khaas” (important one).”
Sinha also alleged that the BJP, after coming to power, has warmed up to all such policies that it had opposed during the UPA rule. Referring to awards that the BJP-ruled Madhya Pradesh has received for its performance in agriculture, he said, “They are given on the basis of mere figures. I have played with them a lot in my life.”
Earlier, Sinha, in his opinion piece ‘I need to speak up now’ in The Indian Express, had attacked the government over its economic management. Stating that his views were shared by many people in the party who were “not speaking up out of fear,” Sinha had said that the economy is in a downward spiral and its revival is unlikely before the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. The saffron party and the senior BJP leader have been at loggerheads since then.