The Telegraph
Since 1st March, 1999
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Congress takes aim

Shimla, July 6: The Vajpayee government came under attack within hours of the Muslim law board’s rejection of the Kanchi Sankaracharya’s Ayodhya formula as the Congress accused it of trying to derive political mileage by involving religious leaders in the dispute.

Senior leader Pranab Mukherjee made it clear that the development did not surprise him.

Mukherjee, who arrived here with Congress president Sonia Gandhi and other top leaders for a three-day brainstorming session, however, reserved comment when a reporter asked him if his party saw a “ploy” behind the aborted government-backed compromise effort. “Only time will tell,” he said.

But he added that “a lot of apportioning of blame at each other” would continue, presumably to revive the Ayodhya issue in the run-up to the Assembly elections later this year and the Lok Sabha polls next year.

The Congress leader, who described Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s move to involve the Kanchi seer as “extraordinary”, slammed the Prime Minister for not “doing adequate homework” before undertaking such an exercise.

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