Ahmedabad – A woman, whispered to be disgraced saffron leader Sanjay Joshi’s partner in the sex CD, has come out of hiding to deny the allegation. Joshi was like an elder brother to her, claimed the 33-year-old Bhuvneshwari Devi, a married woman and the daughter of a well-known Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh worker who died 10 years ago.
"You can even say he (Joshi) is a father figure (to me)," she told the media yesterday, resurfacing in hometown Vadodara after about a week.
Many are asking that if she was not the woman in the CD, why did she run away from home as soon as the scandal broke on December 27? "I was misled," Bhuvneshwari admitted, her husband at her side. "I shouldn’t have run away."
The CD showed Joshi – who as a Sangh pracharak is bound to practise celibacy – having sex with a woman. Almost immediately after it appeared, everyone in the party circles had begun whispering about "the late Sangh worker’s elder daughter" figuring in it, a senior BJP leader confirmed. There already had been rumours of an affair between Joshi and Bhuvneshwari.
A friend had then advised the family to stay away from the media. Bhuvneshwari said that during her days in hiding, she met a retired judge in Ahmedabad who gave her legal advice. Then, she decided to go public with her "clarification". Sangh sources said Bhuvneshwari was used to having powerful politicians visit her home due to her father’s legacy. She was apparently a staunch fan of Narendra Modi and would boast of her proximity to the chief minister.
Bhuvneshwari had for a while been engaged to a senior BJP yuva morcha leader from Ahmedabad, but the engagement was broken off and she married a government employee, Naryanan Madhu.
Why did she have to publicly deny being in the CD when nobody had publicly said she was? A senior BJP leader appeared sympathetic to Bhuvneshwari’s rather uncomfortable position. "People had started talking about her. It was character assassination. So she needed to defend herself in public," he said.
Bhuvneshwari claimed the scandal was a conspiracy by unnamed "powerful people" to defame her family and that she feared for family. Her husband is seeking legal advice on fighting the scandal.
January 9, 2006 , ASG