Assertion: On 6 November 2013, the BJP Parliamentary Board passed a resolution seeking Prime Ministerial level security cover for Narendra Modi, its Prime Ministerial Candidate. Reacting to this, Minister of State for Home Affairs RPN Singh asserted that the BJP had not provided sufficient security to late Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi who was assassinated by the LTTE in 1991: “The BJP was in power when Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated. Rajiv Gandhi had maximum threat perception and was provided with only a sub-inspector and he lost his life.”
Mr. RPN Singh’s claim that the BJP was in power when Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated is far from the truth. Former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi was assassinated by the LTTE on the 21 May 1991 at Sriperambadur in an election rally. The Union Government in power at the time was headed by the United Front, a coalition led by Mr. Chandrashekar as the Prime Minister. This coalition was supported externally by the Congress Party whose president was Mr. Rajiv Gandhi.
It was the Congress Party’s withdrawal of support to the Chandrashekar Government that necessitated the general elections of 1991.
The BJP’s first stint at power at the Centre was in 1996 when it formed the Government for a period of 13 days. Blaming the BJP, which came to power for the first time only in 1996, for failing to provide adequate security for Rajiv Gandhi’s assassination which took place in 1991 goes contrary to verifiable historical facts and is therefore untenable.
IndiaFacts Fact Meter finds RPN Singh’s claims to be False.
Sandeep Balakrishna is a columnist and author of Tipu Sultan: the Tyrant of Mysore. He has translated S.L. Bhyrappa’s “Aavarana: the Veil” from Kannada to English.