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BJP marries Hindutva with welfare

The Bharatiya Janata Party speaks of a new kind of Hindutva that will not scare away its NDA allies. Shekhar Iyer reports.

india Updated: Jan 29, 2008 01:41 IST
Shekhar Iyer

The Bharatiya Janata Party on Monday spoke of a new kind of Hindutva that would not scare away its NDA allies. With the general elections of 2009 topmost in its mind, the party’s national council decided that it will not talk about the Ram temple, Uniform Civil Code or Article 370 but would rake up issues like the destruction of Ram Sethu for a shipping canal project, the delay in the hanging of Parliament attack accused Mohd Afzal and the UPA’s religion-based affirmative actions.

The party wooed rural India with loan waivers worth over Rs 50,000 crore for farmers and the middle class with cheaper home loans and new income-tax exemption limits.

The party pledged through a resolution to cut interest rates and waive loans taken by farmers not just from banks but also from private money lenders.

To win over women voters, the party plans to reserve one-third of its organisational posts structure for women. Party chief Rajnath Singh said after returning to power the BJP would discontinue with the scheme of allocating more funds to minority-dominated districts. “The BJP believes that every section of the society must be developed,” he said.