BJP President Poll: Did Gadkari conspire against Jethmalani?

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Nitin Gadkari
New Delhi, Jan 22: Mahesh Jethmalani, who had quit the national executive council (NEC) of the BJP in 2012, accused party leaders of not allowing him to participate in the presidential election of the party. Mr Jethmalani on Tuesday, Jan 22 said that he was denied nomination papers.

Citing the allegations raised by Mr Jethmalani, many started speculating - Is it a conspiracy by Nitin Gadkari or his followers to create hurdles for Mr Jethmalani?

According to BJP Constitution, anyone, who wants to contest party presidential election, requires minimum 12 years party membership. BJP party sources claimed that Mr Jethmalani has just three years. However, the lawyer claimed he has been a BJP member for 12 years.

Earlier on Monday, Mr Jethmalani expressed his desire to contest the poll if no one else moves to challenge Gadkari. "I am in favour of a contest against Mr Gadkari as BJP president," said Jethmalani. However, overruling media speculations, he later stated that he will not participate in the election and his statement was misinterpreted.

Mr Jethmalani seems to be upset about the possibility of Gadkari being re-elected unopposed after nominations are filed and scrutinised on Jan 23.

Gadkari is facing income tax department summons to explain his association with alleged dubious business transactions linked to the Purti Group.

Mr Jethmalani's controversial statement surfaced just a day after RSS's move of cancelling LK Advani's proposal to allow Sushma Swaraj to contest in the poll.

The ideological mentor of BJP asserted that Nitin Gadkari would continue as the party president for the second consecutive time.

According to sources, RSS has made it clear that it will not support any other candidate for president. Gadkari has been facing tremendous opposition from many party leaders including Ram Jethmalani, Yashwant Sinha, LK Advani and Shatrughan Sinha.

The anti-Gadkari camp had asserted that allegations against Gadkari in the Maharashtra land scam will compromise the BJP's campaign against corruption. Ram Jethmalani also had said that Gadkari should not be given the second term as BJP president as there are serious allegations of corruption against him.

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