Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat on Friday met the former Prime Minister, Atal Bihari Vajpayee, to discuss the current political situation and to enquire about the latter’s health.
A note to this effect was later issued by N.C. Jhingta, secretary to Mr. Vajpayee.
This was the first meeting between the RSS chief and Mr. Vajpayee after Mr. Bhagwat’s clear signal that he wanted to see a generational change in the BJP’s leadership.
It had become clear over the three days when BJP leaders – Rajnath Singh, L.K. Advani, Arun Jaitley, Sushma Swaraj, Venkaiah Naidu, Ananth Kumar and a host of others – went to the RSS office at Jhandewalan here to meet Mr. Bhagwat and other RSS functionaries that the Sangh wanted Mr. Advani to resign from the post of Leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha and assume the role of a senior mentor.
The other clear signal that came from Jhandewalan is that Mr. Bhagwat expected that any proposal for change should emerge from consultations within the party in which Mr. Advani, Mr. Rajnath Singh and Murli Manohar Joshi should all be involved. During the days of this intense dialogue between the BJP and the RSS, Mr. Bhagwat chose to lunch with Dr. Joshi to make a point that he should not be left out of any party consultations.
It is understood that some of these issues would have been discussed by Mr. Bhagwat with Mr. Vajpayee. Although, it is learnt that Mr. Vajpayee is not able to speak, those who have visited him over the last few months say he understands everything.
Those associated with the party and others who are in the party indicated that they would not be at all surprised if Mr. Bhagwat sounded Mr. Vajpayee on the changes he is expecting to see the BJP make in its organisation.