Jaswant's expulsion "painful" : Advani

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Shimla, Aug 21 (ANI) : Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha L. K. Advani has described the decision to expel former External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh as "painful."

" It was very difficult and painful to decide to expel a colleague who worked with us for the last 30 years." Advani said in his concluding remarks at the three-day Chintan Baithak of the Bharatiya Janata Party here on Friday.

Advani's speech was revealed to media persons by Deputy Leader of Opposition, Sushma Swaraj.

Advani said the decision had become a necessity as Singh violated the core ideology of the party.

Commenting about Singh's Thursday statement that Patel was the first Home Minister of the country who banned the Rashtriya Swayam Sevak Sangh Advani said : " It was Nehru who intended to ban the Sangh and not Patel."

Advani also stressed on the need for expanding and continuing coalition politics to fight Congress hegemony.

He also recalled that it was Jan Sangh President Shyama Prasad Mookerjee who formed the first alliance of opposition parties named the National Democratic Front(NDF) in the first Lok Sabha in 1950.

Advani described the occasion of the Chintan Baithak as historic as the Palampur National Executive meeting of the party in 1989 became a turning point in the party's history.

" The occasion is very unique, we met in Himachal Pradesh's Palampur in 1989 National Executive meet, which turned to be historic in the party's march in last 20 years, and after these two decades we are meeting here for the Chintan Baithak," Advani recalled the memories of that meeting.

BJP adopted the resolution to take active part in the Ram Janmabhoomi Movement, and alliance with Shiv Sena in Maharashtra, in the Palampur meeting.

" When the Maharashtra unit of the party brought the resolution to have an alliance with Shiv Sena, many people opposed it. But today it is one of the long standing partnership of the party," Advani said.

Advani also called the decade of 1989 to 1999 as a progressive as party improved its position throughout the nation and also came to power. But the decade between 1999 and 2009 where the party witnessed two defeats needed retrospection.

Advani also described the Chintan Baithak as a step towards the party's development, and said " the party has got enough space for thinking, expressing, having discussion."(ANI)

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