Advani steps down as BJP leader, woohoo!


by Al-Hack
19th September, 2005 at 4:13 am    

L.K. Advani says he is stepping down as president of the BJP, the BBC says, unable to command the same sort of support after he praised Pakistani leader Jinnah in July. One of the BJP’s most right-wing leaders is finished. All I can say is – woohoo! Bring out the bubbly! Let it be Narendra Modi next please, god?

Deccan Herald has more detail, and Calcutta Telegraph has slightly worrying analysis.


              Post to del.icio.us


Filed in: South Asia






6 Comments below   |  

Reactions: Twitter, blogs


  1. Rohin — on 19th September, 2005 at 2:02 pm  

    My gut feeling is that this won’t change a great deal. The BJP won’t veer to the centre, they’ll remain on the right and perhaps move further towards Hindutva and the RSS – as the Calcutta Telegraph says.

    It was Advani that brought Vajpayee to the fore and I have great respect for Vajpayee. He tempered much of the BJP’s fire and was a truly rare thing in Indian politics – an honest politician (most of the time). I am also, so far, pleased with Manmohan Singh’s tenure.

    I find many aspects of the BJP troubling. But I feel it’s vitally important to have a viable alternative to Congress – another party with whom I have many problems. If and when Congress can manage to leave their past behind and address some key economic issues, I’ll be more than happy to see the BJP relegated to the fringes.

  2. Sunny — on 19th September, 2005 at 2:37 pm  

    I don’t think they can afford to go the right more after the lost the elections. They may eventually realise that the people of India are more interested in bread-and-butter issues than razing Mosques and erecting new temples for Lord Raam.

  3. Arif — on 19th September, 2005 at 7:02 pm  

    I find the media take on his comments a bit puzzling. I would have assumed that calling Jinnah a secular leader is a very backhanded kind of compliment…. It is akin to a Pakistani nationalist pointing out that M K Gandhi was an opponent of RSS-type philosophy.

    I don’t think secularism is a highly prized trait either for BJP activists or for those Pakistani nationalists who like to put India down. I would consider it a bait to infuriate jihadists who want Pakistan’s identity to become more communally Islamic as they interpret it. More positively, the more people perceive Pakistan’s basis as secular (which I think it was), the more difficult it is for the communalists to use nationalism to create religious conflicts.

    The question for Advani is not why he is praising Jinnah – I don’t think he is -it is whether he is mentioning Jinnah’s secularism in order to promote unity with Pakistan or disunity within Pakistan. We need to consider his track record or have more information from him to answer that.

  4. Rohin — on 19th September, 2005 at 7:50 pm  

    Not sure I’d agree that Pakistan’s basis was secular Arif, it was proposed in direct opposition to the secular India – which future Pakistanis felt would give the Muslims a rough deal. Pakistan was a Muslim homeland from the 1930s, when it only existed on paper in a Cambridge University dormitory.

  5. Arif — on 20th September, 2005 at 12:23 pm  

    Rohin, an alternative interpretation is that Pakistan was proposed as an alternative to a secular India which could not guarantee Muslim rights (at least not to Jinnah’s supporters’ satisfaction). Thus an alternative to a secular India in name which would be communal in practice (using the example of communial riots at the time to bolster their case).

    As it turns out, Pakistan’s Governments are not much better at guaranteeing secular rights for Muslims or non-Muslims than India’s. I don’t have a particular axe to grind on this – I don’t consider myself a secularist or a Pakistani nationalist. I’m just watching the squabbles of those who do and find it funny when Jinnah is set up as a great hero by the kinds of people who would probably have been happy for him to be assassinated as an apostate or as a traitor to Hindustan if he were alive now.

  6. Rohin — on 20th September, 2005 at 1:34 pm  

    “I’m just watching the squabbles of those who do and find it funny when Jinnah is set up as a great hero by the kinds of people who would probably have been happy for him to be assassinated as an apostate or as a traitor to Hindustan if he were alive now.”

    On this, we are agreed. Never let it be said that the politics of the subcontinent is straightforward!

Sorry, the comment form is closed at this time.

Pickled Politics © Copyright 2005 - 2010. All rights reserved. Terms and conditions.
With the help of PHP and Wordpress.