Ram Jethmalani's 'break up' with Prime Minister Narendra Modi may come as a shock but not as a surprise. Considered one of India's celebrated lawyer, Jethmalani made sure to put forward his views regardless of how controversial they may get.
Jethmalani never hesitated to criticise publicly either his favourite political party BJP nor his close political aide like Subramaniam Swamy. On the other hand, Narendra Modi has never slammed the 'maverick' lawyer on any particular issue in the public domain.
Despite having issues with BJP, Jethmalani often used to heap praise on the Prime Minister, even calling him the "protector of the minorities". What caused this relationship to sour ? The fallout of BJP might come as a precursor to his eventual 'break up', however, his main criticism of Modi was evident from the blackmoney issue.
Here are 5 major controversies between Jethmalani and BJP
1. Jethmalani vs Gadkari's BJP
After serving 6 years in BJP, Jethmalani was spear-heading a revolt against Gadkari leading the party and was demanding his removal. The veteran lawyer accused Nitin Gadkari of corruption charges, a feud which is still ongoing where he claims that he has evidence showing financial irregularities of Gadkari's assets. Later, he was ready to back even Arvind Kejriwal who was also bent on revealing Gadkari's financial irregularities.
2. Getting expelled from BJP in 2013
After being critical of BJP's leadership, especially the then party chief Nitin Gadkari, the party expelled him for his anti-party statements. Jethmalani wrote to Gadkari that it made him 'sick' that BJP leaders were being silent against UPA government's 'corruption'. Soon after that, Jethmalani filed a defamation suit against BJP for not giving valid reason for expulsion. Later he withdrew the suit.
3. Slamming Modi government on Blackmoney Issue
Jethmalani accused the Modi government for being 'ineffective' in bringing back the blackmoney and claimed that the people who voted for him were frustrated. The 89-year-old veteran lawyer, alleged that "the NDA government has no intention to proceed against those stashing black money as the persons in power appear to be involved in it". Undeniably, it was Jethmalani's efforts that resulted in the setting up of the Special Investigation Team (SIT) to probe on the blackmoney issue.
4. Questioning Silence on Article 370
The former BJP leader , has been ever critical on the Modi's 'silence' on Article 370, which provides the special status to Jammu and Kashmir. It was part of BJP's manifesto to repeal Article 370, however Jethmalani explains that it is part of the constitution's basic structure and cannot be repealed. He claimed that "BJP has kept quiet" after he had explained the importance of article 370 and claimed that Modi himself gave a 'tongue-lashing' to a Jammu minister to never talk about it again.
ABOUT J&K's ARTICLE 370: Unlike other states, Jammu and Kashmir has its own Constituent Assembly in 1951 according to Article 370 of Indian constitution, which gives a special autonomous status for the state.
5. Opposing Appointment of K V Chowdary as CVC
Jethmalani's tipping point for the break up with Modi came after the appointment of former CBDT chairman K V Chowdary as Chief Vigilance Commissioner was finalised. Jethmalani wrote to the Prime Minister expressing strong reservations towards the appointment claiming that Chowdary for unfit for the job and stated that he will fight it out in the Supreme Court. His letter ends saying "My diminishing respect for you ends today."