Sanjay Singh, DNAINDIA.COM
Wednesday, November 22, 2006
NEW DELHI: More than two years after it was defeated in the general elections, the BJP has returned to right-wing Hindutva ideology.
The compulsion of running the coalition NDA government led it to dilute this ideology and focus on India Shining-a change many leaders believe proved its undoing in the 2004 elections. So the party is raising two issues which are a clear return to its old thinking: Opposing clemency for death row convict Mohammed Afzal Guru and blocking any reservation for religious minority.
The BJP will rake up the two issues in the Winter Session of Parliament, which is going to be its Hindutva platform in the election season. Parliament was adjourned on Wednesday, but at a demonstration in Delhi’s Rajghat the party slammed the Government on these two issues.
The party is also expected to target in Parliament the Justice Rajinder Sachar committee’s report on the state of Muslims in the country, which it sees as a back-door recommendation for reservations. The party is also buoyed by the unexpected sweep in mayoral polls in Uttar Pradesh.
At the rally, Atal Behari Vajpayee was in a combative mood. He targeted the government’s “kid-glove” policy on terror and shifting stances against Pakistan. He accused the government of being confused about tackling terrorism.
A combative L K Advani said both Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and UPA chief Sonia Gandhi should make their position clear on the execution of Afzal “They should clear their stand of Afzal’s hanging. It’s a question of justice to the security personnel.”
In Ahmedabad, Gujarat Chief Minister and the party’s Hindutva mascot Narendra Modi asked the UPA Government to explain why it was “sitting” on the mercy petition for the Parliament attack convict. “Why is the UPA government is sitting on mercy petition filed by his (Afzal’s) family which the President has referred to the Cabinet?” Modi said on Wednesday while addressing a BJP anti-terrorism rally. Modi said it was unfortunate that Muslim leaders had “warned” the Government of repercussions if Afzal Guru was hanged.