25 September, 2020

Jack Of All Seasons

Mobile and efficient, Ranga was the youthful and urbane face of the BJP

Jack Of All Seasons

In Panindranath Rangarajan Kumaramangalam, the BJP has lost perhaps its only credible, young, national leader from the South. Ranga’s death is both a blow to the party’s short-term prospects in Tamil Nadu, and a long-term setback at the Centre.

Because Ranga was that rare commodity, a minister who enjoyed the confidence of both L.K. Advani and Atal Behari Vajpayee and had friends in the rss as well. A testimony to Ranga’s ability to play both sides of the fence, which was just the ticket to prosperity in the existent bjp set-up. It was a mutual dependence - the party rescued him from political vanvas and he paid it back in full measure by emerging as one of its very few experienced administrators and skilled troubleshooters. He was made to order - young, popular, bright, efficient and apparently free of crass ambition.

Advani inducted him into the bjp only days before the 1998 general election and Ranga remained a faithful acolyte, cultivating the "chacha-bhatija" relationship he had with former boss...



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