BJP spotlight moves from Vajpayee to Advani | india | Hindustan Times
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BJP spotlight moves from Vajpayee to Advani

For the first time, LK Advani will be the focus of attention at a BJP conclave following his endorsement as prime ministerial candidate by the party, reports Shekhar Iyer.

india Updated: Jan 27, 2008 00:38 IST
Shekhar Iyer

For the first time, L.K. Advani will be the focus of attention at a three-day BJP conclave, starting Sunday, following his endorsement as prime ministerial candidate by the party as well as the NDA.

Right from the word ‘go’, BJP leaders, who are assembling from all over the country at Delhi’s Ramlila Maidan, will look up to Advani for unveiling his plans to enable the party win the next Lok Sabha polls.

TIll now, it has been former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee who has had the last word at all BJP conclaves since the party came into existence in 1980. This time, the honour will go to Advani who will wind up the conclave with his marg darshan address.

BJP officials are not expecting Vajpayee to turn up or send a message. Vajpayee did not attend the last national executive meeting of the BJP at Bhopal in September last year but just as supporters of

Advani were getting ready to focus on him, BJP president Rajnath Singh had read out a message from Vajpayee that said: ‘I will be back in your midst soon.’ That had led some leaders to raise questions about the message.

Last month, on the eve of the Gujarat polls, the BJP’s parliamentary board had declared Advani as prime ministerial candidate.

According to BJP vice president Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, more than 4,000 delegates will be looking forward to hear Advani. The party will focus on strengthening itself at every polling booth-level with an eye on the next Lok Sabha elections. The camp has been named “Vijay Sankalp Parisar”, where delegates will take a vow to make the party victorious.

First, a one-day national executive committee meeting will be held on Sunday, which will be followed by a two-day national council session at the Ram Lila Maidan.

Naqvi said the conclave would amend the BJP constitution to allow 33 per cent of all posts to be reserved for women, from the ‘mandal’ to the state and national levels. The changes were mooted by party leader Sushma Swaraj-led panel, which was approved at the national executive committee meeting in Bhopal a few months ago.

The Ram Setu issue will also be discussed at length for enabling the party workers to propagate on the issue against the UPA alliance. Naqvi said the BJP’s new slogan will be “NDA–Advani raj means security,prosperity, and good governance.”