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HindustanTimes Mon,21 Apr 2014

After Advani, Rajnath meets RSS chief

HT Correspondent , Hindustan Times  New Delhi, July 06, 2013
First Published: 23:52 IST(6/7/2013) | Last Updated: 23:53 IST(6/7/2013)

Talks between the BJP and the RSS have acquired increased momentum as polls draw close, with BJP chief Rajnath Singh meeting RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat at the Sangh headquarters in Nagpur on Saturday.

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The visit comes a day after BJP patriarch LK Advani also met the Sangh chief – again in Nagpur – and described the talks as “very positive”.

Sources say the Sangh has advised Advani to act as a mentor and father figure for the BJP – much like Vajpayee – as a generation shift takes place with Narendra Modi’s stamp very clearly visible on party affairs. He has also been asked to keep talking to parties for possibly expanding the NDA with a view to bring the BJP back to power after a decade.

The meet also marks a gradual ending of Advani’s isolation just after the Goa national executive meet when he resigned from party posts to protest the BJP’s Modi-only pitch, only to be convinced to climb down a day later after a telephonic conversation with the RSS chief. However, this doesn’t undo Modi’s swift rise: after his elevation as the party’s campaign chief, Modi’s confidant Amit Shah has both been made UP in-charge and tasked with the party’s social media campaign.

Rajnath Singh – who went to the RSS headquarters just a day after Advani – said the meeting was routine and too much shouldn’t be read into it. "Advaniji is not upset. There are no differences in our party," he said, adding, "Mr Advani is our tallest leader and guide."
Senior BJP leader Murli Manohar Joshi has also met the Sangh chief.

The frequent meetings are being seen as a sign that the Sangh wants to be more active in party affairs in the run-up to the Lok Sabha polls.

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