Editorial

Forced into exile

By Nagaland Post | Publish Date: 4/6/2019 12:39:51 PM IST

 When BJP founder and party patriarch Lal Krishna Advani (aged 91) was denied a ticket to contest for the 2019 Lok Sabha from Gandhinagar parliamentary constituency which he held since 1991, it was the last nail on his political career spanning over 60 years. Denying a ticket without prior information to a leader of such a stature was to rid of a man whose presence, caused some discomfort to those at the helm. It was Advani to built up the BJP from the time when in 1984 the party had won only two seats- one from Andhra Pradesh and the other from Gujarat. In 1990 its tally rose to 85 seats and by 1991 it crossed the 100-mark by winning 120 seats. In 1996 the BJP won 161 seats and formed a coalition government under Vajpayee but it lasted only for 13 days. In 1998 the party tally rose to 182 seats when it formed the NDA government which lasted for 13 months. In 1999 the BJP again formed a coalition government under Vajpayee after winning 182 seats against 141 won by the Congress. The NDA coalition formed in 1999 lasted its full term till 2004. BJP lost in 2004 when its tally went down to 138 seats. Again in 2009,the party tally was further reduced to 116 and lost its second consecutive election. Perhaps the present BJP could have treated Advani better than having continually ignored him and making it clear he was no longer needed by the present crop or leaders. Advani was the real power behind the BJP but he never grudged the more popular Atal Behari Vajpayee from taking on the mantle of leadership of the party. Advani realised that Vajpayee his old comrade in arms, was the person who had the potential. Today Vajpayee is considered as the India’s most popular prime minister. Advani served as Vajpayee’s second-in-command becoming the country’s Deputy Prime Minister from 2002 to 2004. Advani also served as Minister of Home Affairs in the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance government from 1998 to 2004. Advani was definitely pained by the happenings in India after Modi took over the government post-2014 Lok Sabha election. In his famous statement made to a newspaper on June 18,2015 Advani had expressed fears that an emergency like situation could arise as “forces that can crush democracy” were stronger( than those who imposed the 1975 emergency), notwithstanding the constitutional and legal safeguards. In his tweets, after being denied ticket, Advani took on the present BJP leadership when he said the party has never regarded those who disagree with it politically as its “enemies”, but only as “adversaries”. He said BJP under Vajpayee and he, had committed to freedom of choice of every citizen at personal as well as political level.” The blog is at variance with the BJP stand over the last few months where its leaders, including PM Modi and party chief Amit Shah, have raised doubts about the patriotism of political opponents, especially the Congress. Besides Advani, Murli Manohar Joshi and others have been treated shabbily. Even Lok Sabha speaker Sumitra Mahajan an eighth time winner had to suffer embarrassment when she was kept in suspense over getting the ticket. The BJP today has no room for dissent or free speech and leaders of stature who have been the party’s national torch bearers have been elbowed out.

Launched on December 3,1990. Nagaland Post is the first and highest circulated newspaper of Nagaland state. Nagaland Post is also the first newspaper in Nagaland to be published in multi-colour.

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