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Updated: August 20, 2009 02:14 IST

Between Hanuman and Ravana

Special Correspondent
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Jaswant Singh
Jaswant Singh

A visibly emotional Jaswant Singh said on Wednesday in Shimla he was “saddened and pained” by the decision to expel him from the BJP’s primary membership. For 30 years he had served it and discharged responsibilities entrusted to him, he added.

“In a cartoon I was once depicted as Hanuman, [but] the party is now portraying me as Ravana,” he said. “For my 30-year long association to end this way is, naturally, painful. I regret it,” he said at a press conference soon after BJP president Rajnath Singh conveyed to him the decision to expel him.

He said he would have quit of his own if he had been asked to do so.

At the televised press conference, Mr. Singh said he was “not even shown the courtesy of being called and the decision being conveyed personally by Advaniji or Rajnathji.” He received a phone call from Mr. Rajnath Singh in the morning asking him not to attend the meeting as tempers were running high. “Just before 1 p.m. Mr. Rajnath Singh telephoned again to convey the decision.”

He pointedly indicated that he “would not appeal” to the party to reconsider its decision.

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