New Delhi: Depicting a picture of sharp contrast, Bharatiya Janata Party leader Uma Bharti was in full praises for arch rival and Congress Chief Sonia Gandhi while her party members were out on roads on Saturday to protest inflation and fuel price hike.  

The firebrand BJP leader had gone to meet Gandhi at her 10 Janpath residence to discuss the issue of Save Ganga Campaign. After the meeting, Bharti lauded Gandhi for assuring her to extend cooperation in the campaign.

During the 30 minute meeting Gandhi assured Bharti of discussing the issue with Prime Minister and Environment Minister.

On the other side, a group of BJP members was not pleased with the meeting.

Bharti had earlier written to Gandhi and received a favourable reply from her. This had prompted her to seek an appointment with Gandhi.

However, BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain officially declared that Bharti took permission from the party president Nitin Gadkari to meet the Congress head.

After the meeting, Bharti said that she met Gandhi only on the issue of river Ganga and her attitude toward the issue was very positive.

"I am overwhelmed after seeing the response of Gandhi on the issue of Ganga. She read out portions from a book by Jawaharlal Nehru and told me that her family has faith in Ganga. She has assured me that she will talk to the Prime Minister and Jairam Ramesh regarding my demands, and also ask them to meet me," Bharti added.

The BJP leader said though the government had announced formation of the National Ganga River Basin Authority, nothing much has been done about its constitution after that.

Other than declaring Ganga a national river, Bharti also demanded that more and frequent meetings of the National Ganga River Basin Authority be held to consider the on-going projects and an expert committee should be constituted, which should include locals, people from religious institutes, environmentalists and scientists to look into checking pollution and cleaning of Ganga.

She told that all the work related to projects on Ganga should be done after the approval of the expert committee.  Apart from this Bharti wants that the flow of Ganga water should be maintained form Gangoti to Gangasagar.

(JPN/ Bureau)