The resignation of L.K. Advani from the BJP’s parliamentary board, election committee and the executive committee, as a protest against the appointment of Narendra Modi as chairman of the election campaign committee in Goa, is an attempt to paralyse the party which he himself built from scratch. He has said that the BJP is no longer idealistic.
The event is reminiscent of what happened in the Congress in 1939 when Pattabhi Sitaramayya, the candidate close to Mahatma Gandhi, ran for the post of president but was defeated by Subhas Chandra Bose. Gandhiji sulked and went into silence but did not attempt to destroy the Congress. In another similar event in 1969, Indira Gandhi nominated Neelam Sanjiva Reddy for the post of President. But later, she and her supporters voted for V.V. Giri, who defeated Reddy resulting in a split in the Congress. Mr. Advani perhaps wants to give a shock treatment to the BJP or raise his own stature on the party’s ruins. Whatever the case, he has failed to draw lessons from history.
Arulur N. Balasubramanian,
That the BJP has lost the confidence of Mr. Advani is indeed unfortunate. The veteran leader’s silence in the last few days was an indication of something serious about to happen. With his abrupt resignation, the party has lost the much needed guidance for the coming elections. His exit is certainly not good for the party.
T.V. Nageswara Rao,
Although not unexpected, Mr. Advani’s resignation comes as a shock. Perhaps, it is the first step towards the BJP becoming a regional party.
G.M. Rama Rao,
Mr. Advani’s resignation has created a crisis in the BJP which is difficult to overcome. The move is a setback to Mr. Modi’s rise to power in the party.
Mr. Modi is popular only among Gujaratis. He is not a national leader even though he belongs to a national party. The BJP is making a mistake by projecting a leader backed by crony capitalists and a biased media.
Mr. Modi won the Gujarat Assembly elections and the recent by-elections. It is only natural for his party to cash in on his popularity. Ideologically, there is not much of a difference between Mr. Modi and Mr. Advani.
Mr. Modi’s elevation is just an official beginning for him in national politics. He has not been projected as the BJP’s prime ministerial candidate till date. That said, Modi-baiters, including those in the NDA, should understand that he is a force to reckon with in Indian politics.
A party should choose one who is popular among the rank and file as the leader and the BJP has done just that. If anyone has failed the cause of democracy, it is Mr. Advani. He should have had the courage and honesty to express his views openly in Goa, and accepted the majority decision.
The growing support for Mr. Modi is not just from the BJP but from the country as a whole as many opinion polls have shown. Is it not time to put 2002 behind us?
The editorial “Manufactured consent” (June 10) is unfortunate. Is there anything in the Congress party’s affairs that is not manufactured, that too behind closed doors? Narendra Modi’s elevation, Mr. Advani’s displeasure, unhappiness of some other BJP leaders and political parties — everything is in the open. As for the RSS factor, the BJP’s relations with the sangh are well known. What happened in the BJP in Goa is comparable to the Obama-Hillary nomination tussle. Once the nomination was settled, the two leaders cooperated and won the election handsomely.
Mr. Modi’s anointment as campaign committee chief was inevitable given the pressure in the RSS camp and within the BJP. The BJP, however, cannot be sure of winning the Lok Sabha polls. The bickering within the party has to end if it really wants to take on the Congress. The Congress, on the other hand, must be happy over the developments in the BJP.