No need for Uma Bharti to resign in the light of criminal conspiracy charges, says Venkaiah Naidu
Venkaiah Naidu said no minister will resign because of the new chargesheet and BJP is committed to Ram Mandir.
Supriya Shrinate: How is BJP responding to the criminal conspiracy charges that have been filed against some of your tallest leaders, including Mr Advani, Mr Joshi and Ms Uma Bharti?
Venkaiah Naidu: It is an old case and this conspiracy is not going to stand.
Supriya Shrinate: The BJP is not worried about it all at this point in time.
Venkaiah Naidu: No, because you know they are all charges levelled, they are not going to stand.
Supriya Shrinate: In this three years into your tenure you are trying to build this narrative of sab ka saath sabka vikas being secular, what does this do to your secular credentials, is not this a big blow to the union government?
Venkaiah Naidu: Secularism has nothing to do with this. This was a political case which was hoisted on our leaders. I do not want to go in-depth into that because now that the court is hearing the case, our all important leaders they will come out without any problem. It will not stand scrutiny of the law, after trial they will come out with flying colours.
Supriya Shrinate: How confident are you of that because while the lower courts had quashed those charges the Supreme Court kind of revived it, there will be expedited trial. Are you worried that this could dent your secular credentials?
Venkaiah Naidu: Not at all. Our performance and actions are viewed by the people and they are sure that we do not discriminate on the basis of religion. We do not get involved in communal activities. This has been proved beyond point.
Supriya Shrinate: But shouldn't they resign from their post as this a judicial matter?
Venkaiah Naidu: Let the judiciary come to a conclusion. The lower court has really absolved them.
Supriya Shrinate: Don't you believe public life and public probity demands that...
Venkaiah Naidu: Public life -- probity demands, if these charges are on our ethical or moral turpitude, something like that I can understand, this is an agitation and is a political case, it has been going on for the last 20 years. During Atal Bihari Vajpayee ji's time, wherein Advani ji himself was the home minister and deputy prime minister we thought we should not withdraw the case that shows our standards. Had it been other parties they would have withdrawn these cases, we have not done it at that time and we have not done it now also.
Supriya Shrinate: Ram janambhoomi is a big case and it really involves the conscience of this country.
Venkaiah Naidu: Ram janambhoomi is very important to Indians undoubtedly so where is the conspiracy in this I am not able to understand at all.
Supriya Shrinate: Are you trying to get political mileage out of this? If it was such a bogus case like the BJP wants us to believe it is then why was this show of strength at display in Lucknow, why was Yogi Adityanath, the two deputy chief ministers, the local BJP workers all there, why were they all there?
Venkaiah Naidu: Because they are tall leaders of the party and that too they are facing a political case, it is not about corruption, it is not about moral turpitude, it is not like a scam, scandals.
Supriya Shrinate: Are you willing to wait till this judicial process gets over or is the BJP at one point of time getting impatient about the Ram mandir issue?
Venkaiah Naidu: Of course the country itself is impatient undoubtedly.
Supriya Shrinate: Are you impatient?
Venkaiah Naidu: No, I am ruling the country and I have to go by rule of law and moreover our stand has been from the day one either it is through negotiation or through a judicial, that is the only way and courts have been hearing this case for long. I hope that the case regarded to title will be decided at the earliest.
Supriya Shrinate: Will you be approaching the special bench at all to expedite this matter because your political adversaries say the BJP would want to leverage the Ram mandir issue for election in 2019?
Venkaiah Naidu: No, that is all political charge made by our political opponents. They tried and they failed. They will fail once again. We are not going to do anything to leverage political mileage on account of this Ram mandir movement. It is a commitment of our stand on the birthplace of Lord Rama.