Senior BJP leader and former union minister Yashwant Sinha, served in Atal Behari Vajpayee government as finance and foreign minister, quit the BJP on Saturday, April 21.
The 80-year-old Sinha, whose son Jayant is a minister in Narendra Modi government, has often been at loggerheads with the Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government and criticised its functioning and performance.
Announcing that he was quitting the BJP and launching a nationwide campaign to save democracy, he said, “Today I am ending all ties with the BJP… I am taking sanyas (retirement) from any kind of party politics.”
He was in Patna for a meeting of his front or platform ‘Rashtra Manch’. Present at the meet were leaders from Congress and Lalu Yadav’s Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) and BJP leader Shatrughan Sinha, who has also been sidelined by the party.
Having joined the BJP in 1990s, he blamed the condition of the party to be the reason behind his decision: “I am quitting the BJP because of the party’s condition. As you have already seen the recent Parliament session – it was the shortest session in the history.”
He said: “I don’t want to cast aspersions on the conduct of the Speaker (Sumitra Mahajan), but when she said she could not count whether 50 members favoured the no-confidence motion it was the biggest joke on democracy.”
Sinha said he will now try to unite all non-BJP parties. “I will not join any political party and will have nothing to do with party-politics. I am not an aspirant for any top post and I am making it clear here that I am not at all interested to seek any post,” he added.
He had launched the ‘Rashtra Manch’ in January, a group with leaders from different parties. During the launch, Sinha had said: “Everybody in the BJP is living in fear. We are not.” He had also said that country had become “coarse, one-sided and dangerous. It seems mob has the job of giving justice,” something that has again come true in the Kathua and Unnao rape cases.