Once considered close to LK Advani, Vishwa Hindu Parishad (VHP) veteran Ashok Singhal has turned his face from the BJP leader, saying that he haddominated the party on his terms for the past 33 years and now it was time for him to make way for others.
"Advani must give way to the youth and go for Vanprasth," said Singhal in a two day meeting of VHP that began at Kachhi ashram in Bhupatwala on Tuesday morning. 150 members of VHP from across the country will be participating in the meeting.
The VHP came out in the open on the Advani issue saying that the nation needs young leadership. "The next generation has to move forward with determination, how long will the old leadership last? For the past 33 years, the party is witnessing Atal-Advani decisions," a VHP leader said.
Earlier, the tallest party leader after Atal Bihari Vajpayee, 85-year-old Advani had thrown down the gauntlet by resigning from all posts in the party - parliamentary board, national executive and election committee, just a day after narendra Narendra Modi was anointed BJP’s campaign chief for the 2014 Lok Sabha polls.
The VHP leaders present at the meeting were confident that senior leaders would persuade the veteran BJP leader to withdraw his resignation.
Welcoming Narendra Modi's appointment as BJP's campaign committee head, the VHP chief said the BJP party has honoured the sentiments of the entire country by appointing the Gujarat chief minister to the post. He also said that Advani should consider the ramifications of his actions on the party before taking any steps.
"Advani must act wisely, and withdraw his resignation and give blessings to Modi since it is the voice of the people who wish to see him as prime minister," Singhal said.
Meanwhile, former state union minister and VHP leader Swami Chinmayanand has also tagged Advani’s resignation as a sad affair. He said that Advani had been founder of BJP and had some role in bringing Narendra Modi in the forefront.
"Modi has been 'made' by Advani and he should give him more strength since the country needs a person like Modi," said Chinmayanand. He also said that none could stop Modi from becoming the PM in 2014 elections if Advani blessed him. He restated that Advani must understand his importance and role.