The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) spent nearly Rs 2 crore on its national executive meeting held over the last two days, according to party insiders. Except for clearing the decks for Nitin Gadkari to serve another term as party president, the BJP did not take any important decision during the two-day event. Before the national executive meeting that ended yesterday, party leaders had publicly taken the stand that they did not want to spend too much on the entire event at a time when there was a drought situation in the state.
Rs 2 lakh on food
The bill for the low-cost menu arranged for the 400 delegates came to about Rs 2 lakh, said party sources. After the meeting, BJP state spokesperson Atul Shah even claimed the food bill was much lower than Rs 2 lakh. “We served simple food and avoided sweet and ice cream considering the drought situation in the state,” Shah said.
Shah said a five-member committee was formed for the menu selection. Besides popular Maharashtrian fare, there were food items from four states. While there were resolutions on economic, political and agricultural reforms, and party leaders took stock of the gains made by the party and criticised the policies of the UPA government at the Centre, no other major issues were discussed during the national executive meeting.
Media-shy at top
The top brass of the BJP stayed away from the media during the two days of the meeting. Senior leaders L K Advani, Sushma Swaraj and Arun Jaitley chose not to interact with media-persons, but sent the party spokesperson to speak to journalists. Shah explained this saying the nature of a national executive meeting was different from other party events. “Why would they speak with the media? The protocol of the national executive meet is different from any other ordinary party meet,” Shah said.
Swaraj skips rally
Senior BJP leader Sushma Swaraj skipped the public rally held at Kamgar Maidan yesterday. Party chief spokesperson Ravi Shankar Prasad said it had been decided beforehand that Swaraj would not be present at the rally as she would be attending a public programme in Ghaziabad today.
Swaraj later tweeted: “I respect and honour all decisions of the Party. Please do not draw any other conclusions. I must reach Delhi tonight because I have to leave early morning for an important party function in UP tomorrow.”