Dr P Saravanan, who left the DMK to join the BJP last year, had told reporters on Saturday midnight that he was going to resign from the BJP as he did not like its “politics of hatred and religion”.

BJP Madurai district president Dr Saravanan speaking to the press after meeting PTR
news Politics Sunday, August 14, 2022 - 14:20

Close on the heels of BJP Madurai district president P Saravanan’s midnight apology to Tamil Nadu Finance Minister P Thiaga Rajan, popularly known as PTR, BJP’s Tamil Nadu state unit president K Annamalai has issued a statement announcing Saravanan’s removal from his post and the party. “Dr Saravanan is permanently expelled from the core membership of the party for violating the rules of the party and engaging in activities that bring disrepute to the party,” said the statement issued on August 14, Sunday, further instructing BJP leaders and other members not to contact him for any queries related to the party.

Saravanan had visited PTR’s residence at Saturday midnight to tender an apology to the latter, hours after some BJP functionaries hurled a slipper at the Minister’s car, while he was returning from the wreath-laying ceremony of an army jawan who was killed in a terror attack in Jammu. Speaking to the press after meeting PTR, Saravanan said the incident in question took place after PTR reportedly asked what eligibility the BJP functionaries had to be a part of the wreath-laying ceremony, which the party workers took personally. “After I went home, I was able to find some clarity of thought. I realised that the Minister had studied abroad and used ‘eligibility’ in a different context. He was referring to the protocol that should have been followed during a wreath-laying ceremony,” he said.

PTR took to Twitter and posted pictures where he highlighted the cameras that were surrounding Annamalai and other BJP functionaries and said in the tweet, "It should be clear now why I said we should adhere to protocol & avoid such publicity-seeking stunts."

Unable to sleep, he called PTR to confirm if he was still awake and immediately went to his house to ask for forgiveness, Saravanan said. “I explained to PTR that our party’s functionaries were emotionally charged and acted on a whim. He was quite casual about it. Now my mind is free,” he said, adding that he was a common man and therefore should not have been present at the ceremony as per protocol. But despite that, he and Annamalai were given the opportunity to pay their respects to the deceased soldier, said Saravanan, who had quit DMK to join the BJP just a year ago.

When asked if this midnight apology would cost him his position in the party, Saravanan told reporters that he cared more about his mental peace than his political position. He also said that he would not be continuing with the BJP because he did not like their “politics of hatred and religion”. He said he would resign on Sunday morning, but added that he had no plan to join the DMK as of now and would continue to serve as a doctor.

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