Monday, 10 June 2013

BJP - The party with a 'difference'

As the BJP is passing through a major shift from the traditional era to the modern era, the conflict of opinions as well as interests are bound to happen in a democratic party like this. Long term media speculations about the conflict of opinions in the principle opposition party of India has come out in public after the resignation of the party patriarch Shri LK Advani’s (Lauh Purush) resignation today. The veteran leader who refuses to accept the position of a patriarch and considers himself to be the top contender of the decision making authority of the party, has openly augmented the debate that everything is not fine within the Bharatiya Janata Party through his highly controversial resignation. The veteran leader, who is considered to be a strong contender of the BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate (as per media reports), is finding it difficult to digest the delegation of authority to the slightly modern subordinates of the party.
We cannot deny or invalidate his contribution to the BJP since the inception of the party in 1980. Let us look at the structural increase in the strength of BJP (in the Lok Sabha) after the appointment of Mr. Advani as the President of the BJP during 1986-1991.

      No. of Seats won by BJP

We cannot overlook the fact that he took care of the party like his own child and sacrificed his whole life, for the party to learn ‘how to walk on its own in the storm of dirty politics’. As he is the founder member of the BJP, he has imbibed certain ideologues and principles that are of utmost importance to him, like other founder members – Atalji etc. At any time, he may not be ready to sacrifice his principles or party ideologues at the cost of attaining power. Perhaps that is the reason why he could not make it to the post of Prime Minister. He is often criticized for his tough decisions and his ‘no compromise theory’ on his inherited principles.
On the other hand, there is a sudden steep rise of the showstopper Shri Narendra Damodardas Modi in the party (Chief Minister of Gujarat) is a matter of concern for the party’s senior leadership (particularly Advani camp). He is considered to be a synonym of ‘development’ and ‘good governance’ by his supporters, both in the party as well as outside the party. His charismatic appeal to the middle class urban youth and his vibrant style of speech pulls a lot of praise as well as criticism for him. You may love him or hate him, but you can’t ignore him (I couldn’t find a much better sentence for his description than this)His hat trick in the Gujarat assembly elections in December 2012 and the sweeping away of the recent by-poll elections (two Lok Sabha and four Assembly seats) has made it hard for the BJP to sideline his Prime Ministerial candidature. His mass popularity among the nation (as seen in the recent media pre-poll surveys) and in the party itself is widely known and a matter of concern for both the Congress and the BJP. Although, he has not been formally announced as the BJP’s face of 2014 but the widespread speculations have affirmed his candidature. He dreams of a nation which is free of congress regime. In his own words – ‘Congress Mukt Bharat’
We should not forget that Mr. Narendra Modi is also the invention of the Lauh Purush like many other senior leaders of the BJP. It was Advani who saw the charm inside this amateur leader and picked him up from the RSS and promulgated him as the party’s campaigner in the then assembly elections in various states and in the upcoming Lok Sabha elections of 1990s. He supported him throughout his political journey, even during the black days of his tenure (2002 riots period), by going against the then PM Atal Bihari Vajpayee’s decision to sack the Gujarat CM. He nurtured him with all the political tactics to face the political field, pre and post riots.
On the other hand, like an obedient student, Modi helped Advani in scoring the Gandhinagar Lok Sabha seat till the last 2009 general elections through his endless campaigns on behalf of his mentor by giving him the direct benefit of his mass popularity and the charisma nurtured to him by Advani.
If the mentor is so dedicated towards his student and the student is also obedient, then what has happened to this ‘Krishna-Arjun Jodi’ these days? Well, the answer lies within the persona of both the leaders. Advani is a man of principles, whereas Modi is a modern day revengeful politician who wants to reply the Congress in Congress’s own language. There lies a conflict of opinion between the two, in which Advani is more concentric towards staying within the rules defined by the party ideology since its formation, even at the cost of sacrificing power whereas Modi is in favour of pulling out the corrupt five decades long dynastic regime of congress, even if he has to go through the backdoor ideology of congress’s politics. There may also be a tussle between power sharing (as per media speculations) as both of them are highly ambitious. We should not forget that Advani was the Modi of 1990s and therefore he must be expecting from Modi to step aside from the Prime Ministerial race as he did for Vajpayee in the 1998 elections. In addition to that, the way media represented the fall of Advani in BJP in the last two days could be highly disturbing for a dominant personality like him. The protests outside his residence by the so-called Modi supporters worked as an oil in the fire for a highly respected personality of Advani. These ‘Krishna-Arjun’ are same in many ways and that is why the conflicts are arising because as we say, the same poles of the magnet repel each other. In these two different ideologies, or we say, ego clashes, the one who is worse affected is the party itself. Both of them aren’t ready to bow down or sacrifice their ideology, which is ultimately ruining the campaign and dream of both the leaders - CONGRESS MUKT BHARAT.
Although on a personal note, I feel that there cannot be a rift between a father and a son. According to my personal view, I feel Advani is disturbed with the elevation of Modi by the party president Rajnath Singh as he himself wanted to elevate Modi on a higher role and certainly not in this Goa meet. A father would never get jealous of his son's progress. Narendra Modi has gone out of Advani's camp to the RSS camp that includes Rajnath Singh and Nitin Gadkari. This camp is continuously maligning the image of Advani in the mind of Narendra Modi by projecting Advani as a hindrance in his progress. Advani certainly does not aim to be a PM at this age and he is not willing to sacrifice the old allies of the NDA too. To elevate Modi in the party, Advani was waiting for the right move, and the right time for his projection. After all, he is also aware about the people's sentiments regarding the Gujarat CM. But the Goa conclave of the BJP inflated Modi with the hope of larger role by the RSS camp and sidelined Advani, thereby projecting Advani as a villain in the eyes of everyone especially Modi and his supporters. Furthermore, the protests outside his house by some miscreants broke him emotionally that is why he couldn't sleep the whole night and ultimately decided to resign in the wee hours of the morning. During the Goa conclave, Rajnath Singh asked Advani to be absent from the national executive meet and it was Advani and not Rajnath Singh who was negotiating with the JD(U) regarding the role of Modi in the national politics. In the crux, Advani is upset with the RSS camp, especially the national president of the BJP i.e. Shri Rajnath Singh. I know media would never feel the sentiment behind an old man's (father's) concern for his son, but it was very important for me to inject this paragraph of my personal thinking that I have grasped from all the happenings of today.
What happens next, when the patriarch’s resignation will be accepted? Tune in tomorrow to the #PaidMedia, near you ;)

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