"As a disciplined soldier, I will accept whatever decision the party takes."
Clearing the air on the Bharatiya Janata Party candidate for the Varanasi Lok Sabha constituency, senior leader Murli Manohar Joshi said on Sunday that he was a “disciplined soldier” of the party who would accept any decision to be taken at the Central Election Committee (CEC) meeting on March 13.
Denying that there was a “poster war” between Narendra Modi’s and his supporters in Varanasi, the constituency which he represented in the 15th Lok Sabha, Dr. Joshi said there were only two kinds of posters in the city — one appealing to the people to vote for the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate and the other greeting people for Holi. “This poster war in Varanasi is a creation of the media,” he added.
To repeated questions if he would be shifted to some other Lok Sabha seat in Uttar Pradesh, Dr. Joshi said the party would take a decision. He expressed the hope that a decision would be taken keeping in view the BJP’s electoral prospects and the prestige of the party’s prime ministerial candidate.
A former president of the party, Dr. Joshi is learnt to have expressed his displeasure at the party’s CEC meeting here on Saturday over the reported move to shift him from Varanasi in order to field Mr. Modi from this crucial eastern U.P. seat.
“The decision will be taken by the Parliamentary Board. A meeting [of CEC] is taking place on March 13,” the senior BJP leader told journalists at his residence here. “As a disciplined soldier, I will accept whatever decision the party takes,” he said in a measured tone while refusing to get drawn into the controversy further.
Dr. Joshi, who also heads the BJP’s manifesto committee, met a number of representatives and delegations of farmers and assured them that the party would include their demands on availability of irrigation facilities, cultivable land, fertilizers, seeds and key issues in its manifesto.