Tuesday 18 June 2024

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Politics | National

Advani denies going back to BJP agenda


Union home minister L K Advani has dismissed the speculation of the BJP deviating from the common agenda of the ruling NDA and going back to its own Hindutva agenda.

But in the same breadth, he has told the party leaders that the tendency to be apologetic about BJP's own agenda has contributed to the people's disenchantment.

"Here I do not refer to any specific issue as such, but to our entire guiding outlook of enlightened cultural nationalism, on positive secularism as against pseudo-secularism and social justice and security", he said while addressing the national executive meeting today in Goa.

Speaking later at a press conference, Advani however clarified that it did not mean the BJP will go back to its own Hindutva agenda or part away with the ruling coalition. "The NDA will compete its tenure", he reiterated.

He was however equally critical of the NDA allies demanding head of Gujarat chief minister Narendra Modi, owing responsibility of communal carnage in the western state that left over 800 people dead.

According to him, the NDA allies could talk about the central government but not the state government like Gujarat that is ruled by the BJP. "The BJP has a right to choose its own chief minister in Gujarat and also decide what to do if he resigns", said Advani.

The BJP hardliner also did not agree that it was a balancing act, claiming that the central government is running successfully. "There is absolutely no strain and it is running smoothly", he quipped.

Advani however did not find anything wrong in the prime minister's speech at the public rally yesterday in Goa where, unlike in the past, lashed out at Muslims, displaying its Hindutva image quite aggressively.

He was also non-committal on whether the decision to go to polls in Gujarat was a step forward to consolidate the Hindu vote after the Gujarat episode. "I think the national executive has taken a proper decision", he said.

Referring to party's debacle in almost all the elections held recently in several parts of the country, Advani feels it is because the NDA's performance has been good, but not good enough to fulfil aspirations of the people.

He has thus suggested several measures including inducting some of the talented colleagues in the government into party work. "The prime minister can go for a reshuffle soon after the Parliament session, in consultation with the party", he said.

Besides implementing the government policies by devising practical ways in order to strengthen the government, Advani has also suggested strengthening the system of information and publicity.

To strengthen the party at state levels, the home minister has also proposed deterrent action in some cases of gross indiscipline, if necessary.

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