New Delhi: As caste rioting broke out in Rajasthan, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and Leaders of Opposition L K Advani and Jaswant Singh met on 2 May to discuss ways to defuse the crisis in the BJP-ruled state.
The BJP leaders drove down to 7, Race Course Road, a day after the Prime Minister spoke to his predecessor Atal Bihari Vajpayee about unrest in Rajasthan.
BJP chief Rajnath Singh told reporters that the Prime Minister had emphasized that restoration of order in the state was an immediate concern.
The Prime Minister, Singh said, also mentioned that all efforts should be made for the release of dead bodies from the possession of protesters in the state for their funeral.
“He (the Prime Minister) said restoration of peace has to be a top priority. It should be restored in any case,” the BJP chief added.
The BJP leaders, however, made no demand from the Prime Minister during their discussions over Rajasthan, Singh said.
The BJP chief also ruled out the possibility of replacement of Chief Minister Vasundhra Raje, whose handling of the Gurjar protests has come in for criticism from BJP leaders like Jaswant Singh and Saheb Singh Verma.
He also rebutted news reports that the party’s top brass had summoned Raje to Delhi.
Singh said demands of Gurjars for classification of the community as a scheduled tribe would be considered “sympathetically”. “But the priority now is restoration of peace. The Chief Minister is in constant touch with us and talks with different groups are on,” he added.