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Unhappy partners

The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh has taken serious note of the intense power struggle and squabbles plaguing the Bharatiya Janata Party. Shekhar Iyer and Pradip Kumar Maitra report.

india Updated: Aug 27, 2009 00:12 IST

The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) has taken serious note of the intense power struggle and squabbles plaguing the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP).

But, it still won’t intervene directly to clear the mess. Rather, the RSS expects the party leaders to put their heads together to activate plans finalised at the Shimla chintan baithak (introspection meet).

RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat, who sent out a message to BJP leaders through a TV interview to stop fighting on the eve of the baithak, remains firm that they will have to work out a solution to all the ills.

Whether it is the departure of LK Advani or selection of a successor to Rajnath Singh on the completion of his term next year, Bhagwat wants the BJP leaders to agree on a course of action.

“Whether, it is an issue of ideology deviation, discipline or generational change down the line, Bhagwat wants BJP leaders to put their head together,” said an aide close to him.

A lot of focus is now on Bhagwat’s press conference in Delhi on August 28 where he is expected to reiterate and elaborate on the Sangh’s line of thinking.

Bhagwat expects the BJP to roll out its plan by October after Rajnath Singh and other BJP general secretaries finalise a “Road Ahead” plan, which will be endorsed by the party’s national executive.

In Nagpur, MG Vaidya, former RSS ideologue, said the party had lost its credibility and, as a result, faced a humiliating defeat in the recent Lok Sabha elections.

“The issues, like construction of Ram Temple, the common civil code and abolition of article 370 that the party had promised to the people were conveniently forgotten once they came to power,” he said.

“The way Arun Jaitley was made Leader of the Opposition in Rajya Sabha without taking others into confidence speak volumes about the way the decisions are taken arbitrarily in the party,” said Vaidya, whose views are not always in tune with the Sangh.

“The RSS is not happy that Advani is continuing as leader of the Opposition in the Lok Sabha,” claimed Dilip Deodhar, an expert on the RSS.