Former Union minister and senior BJP leader Yashwant Sinha, who has been hogging the limelight for criticising government policies openly, is now going to launch a “national forum” with people across the political spectrum to debate on issues which, according to them, have not found a proper stage.
Former Union minister and senior BJP leader Yashwant Sinha, who has been hogging the limelight for criticising government policies openly, is now going to launch a “national forum” with people across the political spectrum to debate on issues which, according to them, have not found a proper stage. As per a report by The Indian Express, the forum named ‘Rashtriya Manch’ will have Manish Tewari from the Congress, Ashutosh and Ashish Khaitan from the Aam Aadmi Party, Pavan Varma of the Janata Dal (United), Ghanshyam Tiwari from the Samajwadi Party, Dinesh Trivedi of the Trinamool Congress, Majid Memon from the NCP as well as several organisations of farmers. The forum will likely be launched on January 30 in Delhi, the 70th anniversary of the assassination of Mahatma Gandhi.
With nearly 16 months left for general elections, the Manch hopes to raise the level of discussion of important national issues and provide a counterpoint to those offered by the government, added the report. Interestingly, several of those signing up haven’t been satisfied with the state of affairs in their own political parties lately. Pavan Varma of the JD(U) was a critic of Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s policies till his party chief Nitish Kumar joined hands with him. Ashutosh of AAP, who left a career in journalism to join Arvind Kejriwal, has been hard put recently to justify the Rajya Sabha seats that AAP has given to three wealthy people — one of them who quit the Congress only a few days before joining AAP.
However, it must be noted that the Manch isn’t asking any of these politicians to quit the primary membership of their respective parties. It hopes to provide an umbrella for a meeting of minds, said its members. Any talk of forming a political party is out of the question, as per the report. Given Sinha’s experience as a finance minister, he is expected to raise issues related to the state of the economy, such as the impact of demonetisation and GST, and whether the Prime Minister’s trip to Davos to attract FDI will yield concrete results.
Recently, Sinha expressed his disappointment over the AAP Office of Profit issue. In a tweet, he wrote, “President’s order disqualifying the 20 AAP MLAs is complete miscarriage of natural justice. No hearing, no waiting for High Court’s order. It is Tughluqshahi of the worst order.”