The Bharatiya Janata Party Parliamentary Board on Thursday failed to take a decision on Leader of the Opposition in the Rajasthan Assembly Vasundhara Raje. Ms. Raje was asked to put in her resignation papers in mid-August but, in a show of defiance, has failed to comply with the directive.
A decision will come at a meeting after Diwali. “The issue was discussed but no decision was taken. I do not wish to say anything more,” a member of the board said.
Senior leaders indicated that the matter has become embroiled in the party’s factional politics once again. While party president Rajnath Singh has remained firm that Ms. Raje must comply with the party’s earlier decision, there are some at the party’s top level — apparently backed by Leader of Opposition in the Lok Sabha L.K. Advani — who wish to see the decision changed.
It seems that since the August decision was taken after consultations at all levels, including the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, it may not be easy for the party to reopen the issue.
However, it is equally difficult to force Ms. Raje to resign. If she continues to defy orders, the only option left for the party would be to suspend her.
The party asked Ms. Raje to resign after changing the State unit president. It was felt that the State president and the former Chief Minister (Ms. Raje) should be dropped from their positions as they were held accountable for the party’s sorry performance in the 2008 Assembly elections and the 2009 Lok Sabha polls.