Kalyan lends subtle support to Advani

The anti-Rajnath Singh camp in the Uttar Pradesh (UP) BJP seems to be rallying around senior leader L K Advani, who quit on Monday from all party positions apparently in protest against Modi’s elevation as the party’s election campaign committee chairman.

Former UP chief minister Kalyan Singh, whose Jankranti Party merged with the BJP last year, lent subtle support to Advani saying that he was the “tallest” leader in the BJP and had “contributed immensely” towards building the party.

Toiled for the party

Singh said: “Advani and Atal Bihari Vajpayee have worked very hard to take the party to a position where it is today. BJP will certainly not like to lose Advani.” 

He also made an appeal to Advani to withdraw his resignation.

Singh does not enjoy a cordial relationship with Rajnath. Several leaders could rally around Advani only to oppose Rajnath, party leaders said.

On the other hand, the Samajwadi Party (SP) made light of Modi’s elevation. “Modi will prove to be a big failure in UP. The BJP is now clearly a divided house with two camps, one led by Modi and the other by Advani,” said senior SP leader Naresh Agarwal.

He added that Modi cannot save the BJP, which is already finished in UP.

Unfortunate

Another senior SP leader Azam Khan termed Modi’s elevation as “very unfortunate”. Khan said, “It is very unfortunate that a man who orchestrated killings of so many people has been given an important post.”

Bahujan Samaj Party general secretary Satish Chandra Mishra also said that Modi factor would not work in UP. “BJP’s future is bleak in the state. Modi cannot change anything for the saffron party,” he said.

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