ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Saffron Intact

Saffron IntactThe Bharatiya Janata Party offers a confused mixture of policies but it remains anchored in Hindutva.

Incoherence and posturing have always characterised the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). In the mid and late 1990s the party tried to camouflage its Hindutva base to win over alliances in India’s fractured polity. Such a strategy no doubt paid the party handsome dividends twice in national elections as well as in assorted state elections across the country, wherever and whenever its adversaries were lacking in governance/administration or were unable to form the right identity-based alliances. But every now and then, in order to keep its ideological mentors in the Sangh parivar impressed and to foster the hard line impulses of its activist base, the party goes back to its Hindutva theme.

One such occasion was its recently held national executive and council meetings in Nagpur. The discussions and speeches at the Nagpur conclave assume significance since the meetings are likely to have been the last ones ahead of the 2009 Lok Sabha elections. At Nagpur, the party yet again performed its trapeze artistry of swinging between Hindutva and a modern vision for itself and the nation. Beyond expressing a string of grouses, the meeting offered no coherent alternatives on livelihood issues of the day to the coalition in office.

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