I will remain loyal to members of Gandhi family: Arjun Singh

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New Delhi, May 11 : Senior Congress leader Arjun Singh, who is in the eye of a storm in the wake of his criticism of the party leadership on issues of loyalty, today said that he will remain loyal and committed to the members of the Gandhi family till he is alive.

"I would like to put it on record that when I met Pandit Jawahar Lal Nehru in March 1960, I pledged my total loyalty to him and his family," he said in a statement issued to media.

"This was the commitment, which is an article of faith with me. For the past 48 years of my life, I have scrupulously adhered to it. I shall also do everything to maintain the loyalty and commitment to the remaining members of the family till I live," he added.

Arjun Singh said that he was pained at the needless and irrelevant controversies that are sought to be raised on the book published by Dr. K L Nandan and presented to the President Pratibha Patil on May 9.

"I have no desire to join issue with anyone on this matter and I respect the views of all my colleagues who have thought it proper to comment on it," he added.

He clarified that some Press reports have said that this is his autobiography, but this is in fact, a compilation of articles written by different people about me from time to time.

"All these have already been published and the Granth was presented to me on April 27, 2005. I am still writing my autobiography, which will be published on a future date," Singh said.

Earlier, Singh lamented that evaluation of loyalty in the party was being done in a "very limited context," for which he was criticised by partymen including his one-time supporters Digvijay Singh and Ajit Jogi.

While Congress President Sonia Gandhi gave him a silent treatment at the convocation ceremony of the Jamia Hamdard University here on aturday, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh ignored Singh's diatribe at investiture ceremony at Rashtrapati Bhawan.

"I do not want to comment. These are matters which are better to be left out," the Prime Minister said.

Gandhi also refused to take any questions after the Rashtrapati Bhawan function.

But, AICC sought to show its displeasure with party's Media Department Chairperson M Veerappa Moily saying it was "not appropriate" for a senior leader like Singh to make such statements.

ANI

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