01 November, 2020

The Post-Facelift Wrinkles

The revamp of the party structure only opens the door to more internecine power struggles

Tribhuvan Tiwari
The Post-Facelift Wrinkles
After all the hype and fuss over a new-look, rejuvenated BJP, the fault-lines in the party are again emerging in stark relief. By the end of last week, it became clear that the more things change in the BJP, the more they remain the same.

The changes effected earlier this month were supposed to have settled the Vajpayee-Advani issue once and for all. By elevating L.K. Advani to deputy prime minister, the prime minister was seen as anointing his successor and quietly stepping into the background. The BJP was abuzz with a vision of the "real" leader finally leading it into the future.

But last week, Vajpayee made one of those famous moves that have made him so much more acceptable to a larger constituency than his party. By being absent from the House during the debate on Gujarat, he sent a clear signal that he was not in full agreement with his party's line on early elections in the state. Interestingly, Vajpayee loyalist finance minister Jaswant Singh was also absent from the Rajya Sabha, where he is the BJP parliamentary party leader, when Advani was replying to the...


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