| Uma Bharti(top), Govindacharya
Bhopal, May 12: After the Congress tossed a “cake” at Uma Bharti, looks like the party has now thrown egg on her face, soiling former BJP ideologue K. Govindacharya in the crossfire.
Govindacharya today publicly accused Madhya Pradesh chief minister Digvijay Singh of having a “sick mind and a feudal mindset” for reportedly dubbing the Bharti-Govindacharya relationship a “saga of romance”.
Digvijay denied the remark attributed to him by a local daily. “It was a light-hearted remark, but it was not meant for Uma or Govindacharya,” he said and dubbed the episode a “comedy”.
Bharti, Govindacharya and the BJP leadership were providing “comic relief” to voters by raising “trivial issues” such as the cake-offering to Lord Hanuman and the Bharti-Govindacharya meeting at Kedarnath, he added.
Govindacharya, who has gone into “retirement” from active politics and quit the BJP, said he was recently in Kedarnath, where Bharti and her family members, too, were present.
“There were thousands of other devotees and I was one of them. I do not have to go to Kedarnath to meet Umaji,” he said.
Govindacharya was in political wilderness after he reportedly called Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee the “mukhota (mask)” of the BJP.
“Since the time Umaji has taken sanyas, I respect her and consider her on a par with a guru,” Govindacharya said.
He ridiculed attempts to draw conclusions from a picture, published in Dehradun, showing him and Bharti sitting in separate palanquins.
“Jaisi drishti vaisi srishti (You see what you have in your mind),” he said curtly, hinting at a deliberate campaign to malign him and Bharti.
In poll-bound Madhya Pradesh, every issue with political potential is being flogged, including the seemingly dead Bharti-Govindacharya relationship.
Digvijay never loses an opportunity to take a dig at Bharti, provoking angry letters and press statements from the BJP.
Some of Bharti’s key advisers said Digvijay and his party are resorting to “character assassination” in a bid to taint her sadhvi image. This, they said, would kill Bharti’s chances as a credible challenger to the Congress chief minister.
Bharti is the BJP’s chief ministerial candidate in the state. The saffron-clad Bharti has been drawing crowds during her ongoing “Sankalp Yatra”. Her Other Backward Classes background is a bonus in the state where 52 per cent of people are OBC.
A bitter Govindacharya said he was being “needlessly dragged” into the political battle.
A news agency, he said, had attributed to him a prediction that the Congress would retain Madhya Pradesh.
“I have risen above politics and political parties. How do you expect me to make such a comment'” Govindacharya said.
“How can I support a political party that has ruined the nation for decades' How can I predict a victory for the Congress which had slapped a nation-wide emergency curtailing human rights and inflicting hardship on millions'
“I appeal to you once again, please do not drag my name into politics. I have renounced politics and risen above political parties,” Govindacharya said.
He, however, proceeded to berate the Congress for opening the economy by signing the World Trade Organisation treaty which, he alleged, had mortgaged the country’s sovereignty.
Digvijay and Andhra Pradesh chief minister . Chandrababu Naidu came in for flak for being the most vocal supporters of the WTO regime.
“Let there be social audit of all World Bank sponsored projects and schemes. Let there be a paper on social and economic cost of these projects,” Govindacharya said.