Writing about the Bharatiya Janata Party after speaking to senior people in the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh may not be a very good thing to do, because influential Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh people believe that there is not much difference between the Bharatiya Janata Party and the Congress Party. People in the Sangh are troubled by what they have to ignore and are also annoyed with leaders who are virtually murdering their principles. In fact, they have now reached the mental state of an old lion, which even when it sees its prey passing in front of it cannot attack it. It is certainly helpless, but it finds a way out and that way is to train afresh young lions growing from childhood to youth. When we spoke to some of these old, disappointed, full of anger lions about the Bharatiya Janata Party, then we felt that the pain of these lions should also come before the people. This story of the Bharatiya Janata Party is the agonised tale of these old, helpless, disappointed, but angry people of the Sangh. This agony increased when during the BJP Executive meeting in Goa, people were seen openly formulating strategies to fell each other and implementing them.
The Bharatiya Janata Party today is divided internally into several parts. Every man is engaged in flinging the other to the ground. The situation is : let others drown, but let me be saved. Shri Lal Krishna Advani does not want to lose this last opportunity of his life. Narendra Modi and his colleagues are acknowledging that he will never again get such an opportunity. Sushma Swaraj and Rajnath Singh want to virtually sit on everybody’s head as it were. Rajnath Singh certainly wants to use Modi to garner seats, but also wants to bring about situations which will create doubts about Modi’s unanimous choice as the Prime Ministerial candidate. To get Narendra Modi’s support in the context of seats and to then become Prime Minister himself is the chief formula of Rajnath Singh’s strategy. He had done the same thing at Advaniji’s time in 2004 when he had said that ‘I am a party President, therefore what problem can anyone have with my being the candidate for the Prime Minister’s post?’ Coincidentally, before the 2014 General Elections, Rajnath Singh has once again become the President of the Bharatiya Janata Party.
Narendra Modi brought Amit Shah along with him into the Parliamentary Board even though he was never a tall figure in Indian politics. His ‘credibility’ in Gujarat has been that of a big villain against Muslims and in Gujarat he is regarded as the ‘chotta’ (small) Pramod Mahajan. Narendra Modi believes that in Uttar Pradesh, the more the seats that go to his candidates, the more facilitative and beneficial it will be in his becoming the Prime Minister. Amit Shah has to take care of these interests of Narendra Modi in Uttar Pradesh, but a reply to this game or move of Modi’s was given very soon by influential people in the Bharatiya Janata Party when they had Ram Jethmalani ‘removed’ from the Party. Ram Jethmalani is Modi’s man and Gurumurthy had brought him into Parliament with the logic that Jethmalani will prepare the ground for Modi all over the country. He had also stated that for no fault should Modi go to jail for the riots in Gujarat, because it was this that was in the interests of the Sangh family and therefore Ram Jethmalani should be brought into the Party and into Parliament. We have been told about the folly of the ‘intellectuals’ of the Bharatiya Janata Party, that Ram Jethmalani was a lawyer and he took money to fight cases, therefore he can be given money to fight for Narendra Modi. What was the need to take him into the Party for this? We were given another example: we were told that Madan Das Devi, the Sangh’s representative in the Bharatiya Janata Party, argued before the Parliamentary Board that Mahesh Chandra Sharma did not have a house to live in, so he should be given a ticket to the Rajya Sabha and he got a ticket because he didn’t have a home! Similarly, Gurumurthy gave an argument and that argument was accepted. Ram Jethmalani is an advocate. He did what he should have done. He argued, no matter whether the arguments hit the target or what target they hit. A good example has been given of a piece of coal, which if put on the palm of the hand when hot will burn the palm, and if cold, will blacken the palm of the hand. Everyone was present at that meeting of the Parliamentary Board in which the decision to expel Ram Jethmalani was taken. Ananth Kumar put forward the proposal and the proposal was accepted by everyone. Behind this proposal was Advaniji, who gave a clear-cut message to Modi. Through Ananth Kumar, Advaniji got Jethmalani expelled and communicated to Modi that though he had come into the Parliamentary Board, his ‘wings’ were not very safe.
Behind every face in the BJP there is another face. The face is one thing, the truth something else.
Politics of this kind in the Bharatiya Janata Party made one wonder whether Narendra Modi will be able to reach anywhere or not, as these days neither are there leaders like Atal Bihari Vajpayee in the Bharatiya Janata Party nor is the atmosphere in the country like that of 1989-1990. The interesting thing is that now, neither is there an ‘atmosphere’ nor is there leadership. Despite this the Bharatiya Janata Party is thinking that it will be able to get 200 seats. However, even when there were leaders and an atmosphere, at that time too the Party could not get 190 seats. The people in the Bharatiya Janata Party know the hollowness of these claims, but even then strategies are being made that if we get the seats, why should I be left behind, why should I not press my claims right now. Rajnath Singh will press his claims when the seats come, but Lal Krishna Advani tried to press his claims even before that happened.
Many groups have formed in the Bharatiya Janata Party. Till recently, the first group was that of Advaniji, of which Narendra Modi was also once a part, but this group has now split into two parts. Narendra Modi began leading one group and the other was being led by Lal Krishna Advani. At this time Rajnath Singh is giving power and strength to Narendra Modi. The truth is that Rajnath Singh has been playing a balancing game. On the one hand he sent Narendra Modi’s Amit Shah to Uttar Pradesh and on the other side he virtually ‘buried’ Uma Bharati in Uttar Pradesh and alongside gave an important role to Varun Gandhi. Uma Bharti responded promptly by stating that only Advaniji was worthy of the Prime Minister’s post. Every person said to be in the leadership of the BJP, without concern or worrying about the other, is trying to keep his or head above the water and in such a situation, organisation is taking a beating and this is the biggest worry of the Sangh.
Rajnath Singh is a clever, shrewd player of politics. He knew how to get a reply given to Narendra Modi’s pawn named Amit Shah, through Uma Bharati. He deliberately suppressed Uma Bharti so hard that she went and sat in the lap of Advaniji and she took the name of Advaniji for Prime Minister. Uma Bharati is not in the active politics of the Bharatiya Janata Party. She had recently set out on a Ganga pilgrimage. In fact, behind every face in the BJP there is another face. The face is one thing, the truth something else. Shivraj Singh Chauhan apparently says that he has nothing to do with the post of Prime Minister, but he also wants to bag the maximum number of seats in Madhya Pradesh, so that people there put forward his name for the post of Prime Minister. The same is the case with Vasundhara Raje. Every person is engaged in making his or her home turf into a ‘pucca’ home. That person’s thinking is less for the BJP Government that could come into power at the Centre and more for how to strengthen their own power. The Bharatiya Janata Party has also become a hanger. The incident relates to ‘candidatures’ for election to the post of the President of India. Lal Krishna Advani and Naveen Patnaik were sitting talking. Naveen Patnaik said that every time we have been supporting your candidate, so this time you support our candidate. He proposed the name of P.A. Sangma and
Advaniji supported it. After this, Naveen Patnaik also said to Advaniji that in the next elections, to uproot the Congress, it would be necessary to support their candidate for the post of Prime Minister, because a Third Front Government itself would be formed. Instead of leadership, the Bharatiya Janata Party has now come into the role of a supporter.
In Delhi, many workers of the Bharatiya Janata Party have shifted to the Aam Aadmi Party. The Sangh believes that now these workers no longer have faith that the Delhi leadership of the Bharatiya Janata Party will be able to play a serious role in removing the Congress. The workers are pained by the fact that those whom the BJP had elevated and were made to ‘sit on the head’ in a manner of speaking were later also thrashed with shoes. There is a long list of such people, including the names of Madan Lal Khurana, Uma Bharati, Vasundhara Raje, Shanta Kumar, Bhagat Singh Koshiyari, B.C. Khanduri and Rajnath Singh and even Rajnath Singh. Out of these, only Rajnath Singh has been fortunate to come back into the mainstream again.
By saying that Nitin Gadkari would ‘guide’ the Lok Sabha elections Advaniji tried to create a new power centre. Actually, these were small incidents, but these incidents were ‘messages’ to Narendra Modi to remain within his limits. The second biggest sorrow of the Sangh is that it has the most dedicated workers in the world but in spite of this, the Bharatiya Janata Party has been losing elections. At the root of this can be seen the psychological maxim : one kills one’s own ( loved ones). Narendra Modi will also be ‘killed’ by his own, that is their belief. Today, there is not even a bit of enthusiasm amongst the workers of the Bharatiya Janata Party. Perhaps the reason behind this is the leadership of those people who do not have a relationship with the Bharatiya Janata Party. An example of this is the existing executive of the Bharatiya Janata Party. There are many persons in it who have never had anything to do with the BJP. Sangh leaders ask what do Arun Shourie, Jaswant Singh, Sushma Swaraj and Yashwant Sinha have to do with the BJP? It is said that the Sangh controls the BJP, but now, neither is there the ideology of the Sangh in the BJP nor the leadership of the workers of the Sangh. The example is also given that people like Govindacharya and Sanjay Joshi are thrown out from the BJP, but people like Ram Lal are kept – during whose time three crore rupees disappeared from the BJP central office and have not been traced till today. Neither has the responsibility for this been decided till today, nor have any questions been raised. A disappointed Sangh leader says that the feet of a child, giving indications of what the child will grow up to be are being seen in the cradle itself.
Within the Congress, power stays in the hands of one person, and even though the Syndicate uses that power, the Syndicate does so in the name of the supreme leader of the Congress. Sonia Gandhi is not powerful herself but the Syndicate makes her powerful. The Syndicate ensures that every decision that goes out should go out into the country in the name of Sonia Gandhi and it should be known as such. The result of this is that the mechanism and authority is clearly reflected before the people and there is no confusion. The second aspect of this is that whatever political deals are made are done at the lower level and the leader puts a seal on them. This is a kind of power centre. The other kind of power centre is that of the Communist Parties, in which everyone takes a collective decision. At first, the BJP appeared to be like the Communists decisions were taken together. The Sangh and BJP people used to sit together and take a decision, but nowadays, who takes decisions in the BJP and who reverses them, nobody gets to know. About a month ago, it seemed that Modi was emerging as a major power but then cunning people within the BJP began to try and ‘erode’ him too. Sangh people believe that since there is no individual power centre, therefore, there is no unity of command either. A group does not sit together, therefore, decisions are taken left and right. Earlier there was a certain similarity between the Congress and the BJP : where one person took a decision in the Congress, a group took a decision in the BJP. Now, there is another similarity: in the Congress, if a person is caught in corruption, all others extend support and try to save the person. The same is now happening in the BJP. Like the Congress, in the BJP too, money is being ‘eaten’. The people of the Sangh give an example of this. They say that too many dams should not be constructed in the mountains, the BJP made the biggest noise about this, but the most dams were made during the time of the BJP Government. The BJP did many such things which the Congress could not even have thought about in a dream. Like the Congress could not have sold Hindustan Zinc for almost five hundred crore rupees even in a dream, but the BJP sold it. Famous industrialist Anil Agarwal is ready to buy the thirty per cent that is left of Hindustan Zinc for twenty thousand crore rupees. After all, what happened in the last twelve years that the price of a 70 per cent share should be 452 crore rupees and the price of 30 per cent share should be twenty thousand crore rupees? There are other instances too.
We are making a new revelation. When Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the Prime Minister, his son-in-law Ranjan Bhattacharya and his National Security Advisor Brajesh Mishra were together talking to Pakistan and America. The talks were about taking some parts of Jammu and Kashmir and giving them to Pakistan and along with that there a permanent border agreement should be made. The Sangh people believe that in the country this was the most dangerous agreement, but it could not be made. At that time Govindacharya made a big hue and cry and told the Bharatiya Janata Party that if it gave even a small part of the country to Pakistan, it would never ever again be able to come to power. The American ambassador of that time was very annoyed at Govindacharya’s protests and he lashed out that Govindacharya was saying that Vajpayee was a ‘mask’. In fact, Govindacharya was removed from the party at the behest of America. The result which comes out is that the BJP can do that which the Congress cannot do and that is perhaps because in corruption, the BJP is far ahead of the Congress in many places. In Karnataka, Yeddyurappa and in Rajasthan, the stories of Vasundhara Raje’s ‘reign’ confirm this. In ‘eating’ money, not doing work, and not doing work for its people, the Bharatiya Janata Party is very far ahead of the Congress.
Sangh people say that when a worker went to or goes to Ministers of the BJP, because they cannot demand money, they don’t do that person’s work whereas it has been seen that the work is easily done when money is provided. During the BJP’s ‘rule’, out of the Directors made in banks, half were from the Congress, who had never been able to become Directors during Congress ‘rule’. It was said in those days that those who had become bank Directors had given one or two lakh rupees. In this matter, it is not the Congress which is an ‘A’ team, but the BJP which is an ‘A’ team of the Congress. Nowadays, anyone in the BJP can be ‘removed’ at any time. In the Congress, a person who has been ‘removed’ is never taken back, but in the BJP, a person who is ‘removed’ can come back at any time. Ram Jethmalani went out and returned to the Party four times. In Uttar Pradesh, the return of Uma Bharti and Kalyan Singh is not as big an incident as the induction into the BJP, during the last Vidhan Sabha elections of Babulal Kushwaha — a Minister in the Mayawati Government. Everybody in the BJP in Delhi knows that this person was taken into the Party for a fat sum of money, because of which the Bharatiya Janata Party lost badly. Not only this, D. P. Yadav too wanted to get into the Bharatiya Janata Party by giving a fat sum of money. Sangh well-wishers say that by taking the decision not to include D.P. Yadav in his party, Akhilesh Yadav laid the foundations for victory in Uttar Pradesh. While the BJP, by taking Mayawati’s corrupt Minister, scripted its defeat in the future with its own hands. An amazing thing in the Bharatiya Janata Party is that the person under whose leadership the Party’s seats decrease, that person is never changed.
Has the Bharatiya Janata Party become a spent force? The truth is that the Sangh is completely out of the decision making process in the Bharatiya Janata Party. The Sangh believes that the Bharatiya Janata Party is like a kite cut from its string floating in the sky (‘kati patang’) and it will gradually be reduced to ten to fifteen seats. When BJP leaders will become frustrated and it will be ‘sangham sharanam ghachami’ (unity is strength…) for them, then the Sangh workers will devote themselves to making the BJP stand again. The Sangh says that the inflation that is there today, the number of irregularities which are there, the number of scams which are surfacing, in spite of this if the Central Government is not collapsing, and this in a situation when the Government does not have a majority, then it is the fault of the Bharatiya Janata Party. If the country’s Home Minister goes to America to get his eyes checked, it means that the doctors who take care of the eyes of 120 crores of people are useless. If the BJP cannot make even this an issue, it cannot do anything. If Sushil Kumar Shinde’s eyes are so bad, weak or poor, how can he be the Home Minister of the country? Why has the demand for his dismissal not been raised by the Bharatiya Janata Party? The country was burning (Chattisgarh massacre) and he was getting his eyes checked in America! The Sangh is pained that the BJP did not raise any voice. The Sangh is also distressed that the Bharatiya Janata Party, even though it is the main opposition party, it has harmed the dignity of the Opposition. Actually, the BJP has no cutting edge and neither are there such people left who can give it that cutting edge.