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Vajpayee has not spoken to me : Advani

Written by: Staff
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Ananthapur, Andhra Pradesh , Apr 15 (UNI) Senior BJP leader L K Advani today maintained that Mr Atal Bihari Vajpayee had not at all spoken to him after news reports suggested that the former Prime Minister was upset about his statement distancing himself from the decision to exchange hardcore extremists in return for the release of hijacked passengers of an Indian Airlines aircraft in December 1999.

On reports claiming that Mr Vajpayee was very upset of Mr Advani's statement in Maharashtra, the Leader of the Opposition in Lok Sabha said Mr Vajpayee had not spoken to him at all.

In his statement in Pune, Mr Advani indicated that he had differed with the decision taken by the NDA regime to release three terrorists, including JeM chief Masood Azhar, in exchange for hijacked IC-184 passengers when he was the country's Home Minister.

Mr Advani also stated that he had expressed his views within the government and went along with the government once the decision was taken by the NDA regime.

Then Foreign Minister Jaswant Singh had only implemented the government's decision, he added.

According to reports from Delhi quoting sources, Mr Vajapyee was thinking of canceling his plans to join the Bharat Suraksha Yatra of Mr Advani at Lucknow later this month.

Former BJP President M Venkaiah Naidu doubted the authenticity of the reports published in a Hyderabad-based daily saying that he would not lend any credence to the reports because they were based on ''unnamed sources'' and maintained that things were alright between the two top BJP leaders.

UNI MCN MA AT KN1703

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