With the Supreme Court refusing to interfere in communal charges against Narendra Modi in Gaulbarga case, and the U.S. lavishing praises on the Gujarat Chief Minister, the contention on who is going to lead the party in the next general elections has already begun. Even as BJP is confused over its possible PM candidate, the party seems to be having 4-5 contestants, who may run the race for country’s most powerful post. Congress has called them the hopeful five of a faceless BJP. BJP will have to sooner or later choose one of the faces to take on Rahul Gandhi in the next general election, which some analysts feel could happen as early as mid-2012.
At the moment, as indications from the party suggest, Narendra Modi has suddenly become the most likely candidate to lead the party in the next Lok Sabha elections.The U.S. Congressional report had last week praised Gujarat CM for his developmental works in Gujarat, and pitted him as BJP’s Prime Ministerial candidate. With the Supreme Court also deciding not to take part in cases against him, the controversial Gujarat Chief Minister has become the prime focus in political circles. While his ‘Sadbhavana’ fast may not win him may fans, the monumental works undertaken by the CM, making Gujarat one of the most well ruled and developed states, has finally began to erode some of the blot he gained in the aftermath of the 2002 riots. In a poll conducted by PolityIndia for the 2014 BJP’s PM, Modi secured a whooping 88.8percent votes. How much of that is going to translate in the next elections, only time will tell.
After BJP’s loss in 2009 elections, Advani stepped out of the PM’s race. The veteran BJP leader may have also recently denied any aspirations on his part to become the prime minister, but his announcement of a nation-wide rath-yatra to expose corruption, is being seen as a move to project himself as a prime ministerial candidate in 2014. The former deputy prime minister has the age factor (he is 85 now) running against him, and as India looks forward to a young leader to carry the burdens of the country, Advani’s chances of fighting for the highest office remain bleak.
A Lawyer turned politician, Arun Jaitely is known for his straight talk, and strong arguments. The leader of the opposition in Rajya Sabha is also being projected for PM’s post, by some in the party. He is not tainted in the Babri demolition case like Advani. He is also not tarnished in a riot case like Narendra Modi. Jaitely is articulate and media savvy. He has the required experience and capability to lead the country. The age factor is also not against him. Jaitely’s closest rival is Sushma Swaraj.
It is an open secret that Swaraj is in a race with Jaitley for projection as BJP Prime Minister Candidate. Her recent criticism of Jaitely for the corruption mess in Karnataka is a clear indicator to the power struggle in the BJP.
As far her chances go, Swaraj obviously has the political knack to be successful in the elections. She is also a front runner for the PM’s post, being the leader of the opposition in Lok Sabha. She has the required tenacity and experience to outwit the Congress. Being a woman is also an added advantage, as the country has not seen a women prime minister since the times of Indra Gandhi. She is also a wonderful orator and has good command over language. Moreover, Swaraj is also free from the unholy crimes of corruption and communalism.
BJP President Nitin Gadkari, a strong follower of privatization is also a contender for the prime ministerial post. Gadkari has been recently praised for an effective branding of the party, focused more on development, rather than sensitive issues like Hindutva. Gadkari has also shown better strategizing and organizing skills than his predecessors, in quelling the internal party dissidence. All this portend well for him to run the race of the prime minister.
- We Have Modi, Whom Do You Have? (richardrego.wordpress.com)
- Narendra Modi Versus Rahul Gandhi – Who Will Win The Elections? (socyberty.com)
- The Yatra of a Neta, a Baba and an Activist (ktrmurali.wordpress.com)