By: Ganesh Sovani
September 16, 2005
expressed here are author’s own and not of this website. Full disclaimer
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Barely twenty four hour to go for BJP’s national executive meet at Chennai
on Friday (16th September, 05) and the Khurana episode having been
relegated to the backburner, India’s main opposition party seems to be at
little ease by now.
The manner in which the entire Khurana matter was initially handled
manifested the cross currents existing in the BJP. However, hectic
initiative taken by second rung leader like Pramod Mahajan could not only
defuse the tension prevailing in the party, but it could also boost the
morale of the party workers which was greatly sapped ever since the party
lost the power in April 2004 national polls. Precisely for this reason,
the media too has acknowledged the crucial role played by management
master, Mahajan in the entire controversy which came to be generated after
former PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee had expressed his open disapproval to
After Jinnah controversy had died down, for the second time in less than
three months, the party had to undergo a very precarious situation, when
most of it’s cadres were mentally disturbed the situation had come to such
a pass talk about possible split or division in the party was once again
being hotly debated.
Khurana has definitely got the benefit of doubt, given his past
contribution to the party. But it is unlikely that this maverick Delhi
politician would remain quite for a long time. True to his own style, he
was quick to clarify that he had not apologized over his remarks about
party president L.K. Advani, but he had merely expressed regrets oer his
During the course of Jinnah controversy , the RSS had taken huge
initiative in making it’s displeasure over Advani conferring ‘secular’
certificate to the founder of Pakistan, and it was strongly speculated
that the originally scheduled Chennai meeting in August would result in
Advani’s exist from party’s premiership. Even the stories had appeared in
the Indian media, that the RSS had taken a firm assurance from Vajpayee,
that he would ensure change of guard in the party within three months, if
Although, the section of Indian media has been agog for quite some time
that Chennai meet would result in LK Advani resigning from party’s
presidentship, however, it is most unlikely to happen so. On the contrary,
Advani might try to re-establish his firm grip over the party.
The moot questions are, where and how does the party proceed from now
onwards? What is its game plan? What type of policies it should adopt in
order to depict the incumbent UPA government in a bad light? What would be
it’s priorities ? What it wants to say about the economic policies adopted
by the UPA government, etc.
The common man in the country expects that India’s cadre based
organization should not waste it’s energy in trivial or inconsequential
issues of Sonia’s foreign origin, her heir apparent, etc., but, it on the
country, it should focus on those issues which have direct bearing on
India’s security and the peaceful existence of a common man.
One feels that BJP has a good scope to focus on the consequences of
repealing POTA, which have resulted in tremendous upsurge of terror and
violence related activities all over the country. The terrorism is no
longer confined to J&K, or North – East alone, but it has spread it’s
tentacles in fifty five districts of India’s’ dozen states. It was the
gruesome killing of Congress I MLA on the Independence Day along with
seven others, which prompted the AP Chief Minister Rajshekhar Reddy to
impose a complete ban on all Naxal outfits, with whom his government had
engaged in peaceful negotiations barely an year ago.
Off late, Chattisgarh state, which is under BJP’s rule, has also
experienced Naxal menace when thirteen CRPF men were killed when a bus
carrying them was blasted with the help of land mine devise.
Given the alarming rise of terror activities in J&K, the BJP is most
likely to focus on country’s security scenario, infiltration from
Bangladesh and declining law & order practically in every state across the
country. It would not be surprising if the party comes down heavily on UPA
in general and Congress I in particular for repealing India’s anti –
terror law POTA.
One must not forgot that the party is organising its national executive
meeting, in a hostile territory, i.e. Tamil Nadu, where the BJP has very
little presence. It’s honeymoon, with one time NDA collation partner AIDMK
is over. As a matter of fact, it was the complete rout of Jayalalitha’s
party in 2004 Parliament polls, which was primarily responsible, for NDA
loosing the power, at the Center in addition to deflating of TDP in
neighbouring Andhra Pradesh.
The BJP has already announced that it would fight next year’s TN assembly
election on it’s own, a venture which is unlikely to yield any beneficiary
results for the party. On the other hand, a rapprochement with Jayalalitha
would be a better option. However, this option would be strongly resisted
by the stalwarts in RSS and VHP, who are considerably enraged after Kanchi
seer having been implicated in a murder case by the TN’s incumbent chief
It is quite likely, that new or added responsibilities would be thrust on
the second rung leadership of the party, in an attempt to make them more
people friendly. Regrettably, majority of the second rung leaders, with
the sole exception of Rajnath Singh from UP, none of them has a strong
mass base, or a public contact. On the contrary, they have acquired an
image as a ‘five star culture’ leaders.
It seems that the party would do it’s level best attempt to enhance it’s
chances of winning Bihar assembly polls in tandem with the JD (U), as
Laloo’s lantern is considerably fading. Repeated demands made by the LJP’s
president Ram Vilas Paswan of ensuring a Muslim chief minister for Bihar
are causing substantial cracks to RJD-Congress I combine. A section of the
BJP feels that an end to Laloo’s regime in Bihar would ensure a countdown
of UPA government at center.
Though the party is unlikely to adopt any an overt ‘pro-Hindu’ stand, only
causal mansion of Ram temple in Ayodhya, coupled with a need for a Uniform
Civil Code in it’s resolutions would be emphasised to both placate and
All in all, BJP’s Chennai meet would be calm and a peaceful affair, which
would mean a big disappoint to the Indian media, which does not spared a
single opportunity to magnify, even a minor fissure in the party even on
trivial issue as a major crack.
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