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Can BJP stik to Hindutva agenda?

india Updated: Dec 26, 2006 22:44 IST
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As the saffron brigade basks in the glory of holding a successful "Parivartan Rally" more serious challenges await the cadres with commitments made to pursue the Hindutva agenda staring the Bharatiya Janata Party at its face.

A question mark hangs on how far the BJP would be able to go to meet its commitments on pursuing Hindutva agenda as this may negate objectives of National Democratic Alliance.

This became evident at the BJP conclave that concluded in Lucknow last week. Besides committing itself to Ram temple issue the BJP also passed a resolution accusing the Congress led UPA government for appeasement of minorities.

A day after the BJP national council adopted the resolution the former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee invited Muslims to join hands with the saffron brigade to dislodge the Mulayam Singh Yadav government. True, appeasement of Muslims and invitation to them to join hands with BJP are two different things altogether and the State party president Keshri Nath Tripathi also tried to dispel this impression in reply to a question in Lucknow on Tuesday evening.

"BJP never gave up Ram temple issue," said Tripathi adding the Congress was responsible for creating such an impression. The BJP was committed to build the Ram temple through legislation if the party got a majority of its own in Lok Sabha, he said adding the BJP believed in justice to all and appeasement of none.

His observations received a nod from other senior party leaders who had assembled in his chamber to congratulate Tripathi for the successful rally.

Senior BJP leader Kalyan Singh however refused to say anything. Singh could be seen closeted with other BJP leaders probably discussing the finer points of the strategy he may be chalking out for the coming Vidhan Sabha elections. As a successful rally has sent signals that all was not wrong with the BJP's cadre management the turn out at the BJP's headquarters on Tuesday was unexpectedly high.

So, the BJP leaders used the opportunity to give an impression that there was an upbeat mood in BJP. "A large number of people from rural areas attended Parivartan Rally," said Tripathi adding this has proved party's point that 45 per cent of village pradhans who won the panchayat poll owed allegiance to the party.

This also proved the point that people were fed up with the Mulayam government and were looking towards BJP as a better alternative, he said.

Besides senior leaders others in the party are also not leaving any opportunity to give more credence to claims that the downward slide in BJP's popularity graph had been checked. There is also an effort to give an impression that instead of any exodus from BJP the party was now attracting MLAs from other parties. The Samajwadi Party MLA Kanshi Ram's reported joining of the BJP is quoted to buttress this claim.

The BJP also wants to give an impression that the party's search for winnable candidates has evoked good response. So the BJP is seriously contemplating a move not to give any tickets to those having criminal antecedents. Will this help the party swing the popularity graph upwards? This is the question that would find its answer in the days to come.

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