Senior Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh leaders have not endorsed or shared the views of BJP veterans LK Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi, Shanta Kumar and Yashwant Sinha, who, in a joint statement, challenged the saffron party’s leadership following the Bihar debacle.
But there are murmurs of discordant notes and a palpable unease over the BJP’s abysmal Bihar show in the RSS headquarters. A sizeable section within the cadre is against the “dictatorial” functioning of both Modi and Shah and call for a collective leadership now within the organization and the government.
The BJP veterans said that Bihar poll defeat was a clear indication that the party learnt no lesson from the Delhi fiasco.
A senior RSS leader, who preferred anonymity, said that Modi and Shah did exactly the way they acted during Delhi assembly elections. In Bihar, those with questionable credentials were given party tickets. The party’s campaign in Bihar digressed from the development agenda and instead focused on Lalu-Nitish bashing. Shah’s remark that Pakistan will celebrate his party’s defeat was another such uncalled for statement, the RSS leader said.
Former RSS swayamsevak and a Sangh observer Dilip Deodhar felt that now the RSS would force Modi and Shah to go in for collective leadership and dissuade them for Hindu Talibani approach. Moreover, a sizeable RSS swayamsevaks are also unhappy with Sangh chief Mohan Bhagwat for his pro-active political statements.
The BJP’s other allies refused to join the issue and said the “principal reason for the latest defeat is the way the party has been emasculated in the last year.”
Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), a key NDA constituent, refused to comment on the issue. “This is purely an internal matter of the BJP. We do not want to say anything,” said party MP Naresh Gujral.
‘Saamna’, the Shiv Sena mouthpiece, has been echoing many of the points that have been raised by the veterans.
However, Matoshree choose to maintain a studied silence over the issue. This could also be owing to the fact that Matoshree has traditionally shared warm relations with Advani for decades now.
“It’s the BJP’s internal matter and we don’t wish to comment on it,” Sanjay Raut, party spokesperson and MP said.
Meanwhile, the Congress took a dig at the BJP, with senior Congress leader and former finance minister P Chidambaram claiming that the country was seeing “the first fireworks” on the eve of Diwali.