New Delhi: The BJP seems to have quietly buried its promised disciplinary action against Pragya Singh Thakur — the main accused in the Malegaon bomb blast and now a party MP from Bhopal.
Thakur had described Mahatma Gandhi’s assasin Nathuram Godse as a patriot, causing nationwide outrage during the Lok Sabha election campaign. In a damage-control exercise, the BJP had announced on 17 May that her case was being referred to the party’s disciplinary action committee.
BJP president Amit Shah had then given the committee 10 days to come up with a detailed report for further action. It’s been exactly a month since and there has been no word.
Reason: The three-member disciplinary action committee was virtually defunct in the first place when the case was referred to it, with its chairperson having been appointed a governor and another member having already resigned.
An inactive committee
The BJP’s disciplinary committee normally consists of three members. When the Pragya Thakur case was referred to it, however, one of its members, Ganeshi Lal, was by then appointed as Odisha governor. Vijaya Chakravarti, another member, had resigned for personal reasons.
The third member was Satyadev Singh, who is also the president of the UP BJP disciplinary committee. He is already burdened with more than 100 cases of sabotage and other indiscipline complaints filed by the state BJP.
According to Satyadev Singh, when the Pragya Thakur case was referred to the committee, it neither had a president nor a secretary. He told ThePrint that he felt a one-man committee would not be able to take a decision in such a high-profile case and had hence requested BJP general secretary Ram Lal to either take a decision on suspending Thakur on his own or to refer it to party president Amit Shah.
On 4 June, much after the 10-day deadline had lapsed, the party finally nominated two new members — Avinash Rai Khanna from Punjab and Om Pathak from UP — to the committee. When ThePrint asked Pathak about the progress in the case, he said that he was not authorised to speak on the issue.
Khanna pointed to the office of BJP secretary Mahendra Pandey, saying that the records of the committee’s meetings in the case were in his office. He added that as far as he knew, no final decision has been taken on the issue and the ball is in Amit Shah’s court now.