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HVK Archives: BJP unlikely to give in to Jaya's demands

BJP unlikely to give in to Jaya's demands - The Observer

N Sathiya Moorthy ()
March 13, 1998

Title: BJP unlikely to give in to Jaya's demands
Author: N Sathiya Moorthy
Publication: The Observer
Date: March 13, 1998

The Bharatiya Janata Party will rather forgo its dream of
capturing power in New Delhi than yield to the ALADMK pressures
for the immediate dismissal of the Dravida Munnetra kazhagam
Government m Tamil Nadu.

It is also reluctant to Part with key portfolios on which the
ALADMK and some of its allies have laid their eyes, according to
informed sources here.

"We are not against the use of Article 356 to sack a dulyelected
State Government, if warranted. But we cannot take any step that
will not stand the test of law, or. the people, particularly
after our own problems in. Uttar Pradesh," said a BJP source.

According to him, the party will also have problems convincing,
the Samata Party and the Akali Dal, given their known stand on
the Central intervention and also their long-time friend ship
with the DMK leadership.

Through the BJP is willing to have a "quick look" into the
coimbatore serial blasts' to see if it could be fixed on the
booty, if not complicity of the ruling parties in the State, the
AIADMK, it insists that the dismissal decision be taken

"That we can do only by citing the DMK's poor show in the Lok
Sabha polls. But the apex court has not looked kindly such a
course in the Bommai case.

"Anyway, it would also Imply the dismissal of the BJP Government
in Rajasthan and the BJP-Shiv Sena regime in Maharashtra, for the
very same reason.

The urgency of AIADMK supremo Jayalalitha flows from this: seven
Rajya Sabha seats from the State will fall vacant on April 1, and
the DMK-TMC combine is bound to sweep the biennial polls.
Included in the list is senior ALADMK leader G Swaminathan, whom
Jayalalitha would like to honour with a Cabinet berth in the BJP-
led Government at the Centre.

Says an AIADMK source: "Any dismissal of the DMK Government now
would mean that Jayalalitha could try to thwart a 'clean sweep'
by the DMK-TMC combine, by winning back a mandate in an Assembly
election. It could also facilitate the likes of Swaminathan
becoming a Minister at the Centre, to be elected to the Rajya
Sabha, later. "

For all this, however, there are fine distinctions between the
stand taken by the AIADMK and some of its allies. While saying
that they are m the AIADMK alliance, the three members
Marumalarchi Dravida Munnetra Kazhagam overshot the leader, and
taxed its latter supporting the BJP, to President K R Narayanan a
few days back.

While sections of the fourmember Pattali Makkal Katchi is
restless that its ministerial hopes could be thwarted by
Jayalalitha's personalised stand', other partners feel, getting
into the Government should be the first priority, dismissal and
others can follow.

Says one of them: "If some of us are m the Government at the
Centre, we can dig into the deals of the DMK-TMC ministers of the
past, and taken them to their logical conclusion. Why, we can
even lay our hands on documents pertaining to the 'Coimbatore
blasts', and try fix the responsibility on the DMK Government.
That alone would help substantiate Jayalalitha's nti-
nationalharge against the DMK Government, justifying central
intervention. "

The BJP is also said to be in favour of such a course.
Entrusting the 'Coimbatore blasts case' with its national
security ramifications and the like to the CBI, and see as to
what best follow up can be done to address the AIADMK's concerns,
without stepping on wrong began toes. But the party is unwilling
to accomodate some ambitious leaders in the AIADMK at senior-
levels in the Government.

The party, given its 'pracharak background cadre based political
identity, and reservation on economic liberalisation, does not
want to part with some.

Finance, Information and Broadcasting, and even Education.

If anything, the BJP is known to have told Lok Shakti chief
Ramakrishna Hegde that he could not aspire for the Finance
portfolio even before the struck the pre-poll alliance.

Though the AIADMK leadership seems inclined to share this view,
at least to ensure that its lesser ALLACC do not become more
powerful, it has lot the -impression pass that it was standing by
the 'legitimate claims' of Janata Party President Subramaniam
Swamy and Thamizhaga Rajiv Congress chief Vazhappadi K

The BJP is against the inclusion of both, and certainly at a
senior-level in Government, ant the AIADMK would let the BJP tell
them so.

Current indication are that the AIADMK, "having made its point",
will not press it demands further. Nor would it embarrass the
BJP, by delaying the letters of consent any fur ther.

"Maybe, we will take it up later, when the situation is still
conductive, but it to h seen how the BJP would view our demand
then," says the AIADMK leader.

In this context, The refers to the BJP's growing ambitions for
political identity in the State, and the 'Burning confidence they
would get in managing a Parliamentary majority, if they could
manage one now."

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