BJP apparatus remains intact

“A majority of the senior leaders in the party have conspired to continue the status quo that was responsible for the recent Lok Sabha poll debacle,” said a senior BJP leader watching the goings-on in the party from the sidelines.

The much-touted three-day ‘chintan baithak’ — that made senior party leader Jaswant Singh a scapegoat — did a patch work of analysis without addressing the “the crisis of identity” bedeviling the party for the last several years.

The meeting deliberated on the future course of the party and the forthcoming elections in four state Assemblies without adequately dissecting the reasons for the 2009 Lok Sabha poll defeat.

Despite RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat’s call to the elderly leaders to make way for young blood, the incumbent leadership in the BJP asserted in Shimla that L K Advani would continue to be their leader. Translated in real terms, no major changes could be expected in the party before the year-end when organisational elections would require it to kickstart the process of choosing a new president.

Leaders who attended the Shimla meeting feel that the process of state-level organisational changes would begin only after September-October.

The denial of an internal note prepared by BJP vice-president Bal Apte and two other leaders on the party’s failure in the 2009 Lok Sabha election has only exposed the ostrich-like attitude of the party beset with internal dissension and ad hocism. To begin with, the Shimla meeting never intended to fix the accountability for the poor election showing and therefore did not do it. “The same set of people who led the party to defeat would always be happy to escape the accountability test,” says a dissident.

In a bid to ward off any real ‘chintan’, rebels like Yashwant Sinha and Arun Shourie were not invited to the Shimla session. The other dissenting voice — Jaswant Singh — was effectively throttled with an excuse of defending “core ideology”. The “core ideology” was given enough jolt by Advani during his Karachi visit in 2005, without inviting a similar punitive action.

Stalemate

The direction from the RSS chief to induce “young blood” has again been circumvented and skirted by the current saffron leadership. And with the mother organisation, as always, “willing to change but fearing to strike”, the stalemate may continue with the status quo.

DH News Service

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