Rajnath Singh leaves RSS, Advani stunned!
Why is the Congress worried about Rajnath Singh? Did the new BJP president upset the RSS's apple cart?
Read on, and find out in this week's Dilli Gupshup.
The swift change of guard within the Bharatiya Janata Party has left certain BJP-RSS bigwigs bruised.
Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh supremo Mohan Bhagwat, who had practically cleared the way for Nitin Gadkari to become the BJP president once again, was forced to turn 'democratic' and let the anti-Gadkari voices be heard.
Bhagwat had no choice but to recognise the popular sentiment -- the Purti scandal has proved too slippery for Gadkari -- and accept his favourite's fall from grace.
As far as BJP stalwart L K Advani was concerned, he won one battle only to lose the other.
Though Advani was opposed to Gadkari as the BJP president once again, Rajnath Singh did not figure in his scheme of things.
However, like Bhagwat, Advani too did not have much of a choice -- he had to concede the mantle to Rajnath Singh!
But here's the question we'd really like answered -- how did Rajnath Singh swing a second term as BJP president?
Please click on NEXT to find out how Rajnath Singh upset the Congress's apple cart.
Image: BJP workers congratulate their new president, Rajnath Singh.
Photographs: Adnan Abidi/ Reuters
Rajnath Singh -- Rahul Gandhi's nemesis?
It's not just some BJP and RSS leaders who are worried; Rajnath Singh's elevation as the new BJP chief has upset the Congress's game plan as well.
The grand old party was counting on Nitin Gadkari's second term as president to help them keep the BJP on the defensive (considering the corruption charges levelled against the Gadkari-owned Purti company, it wouldn't have been too difficult a task).
Unfortunately for the Congress, the man they are now facing is the former Uttar Pradesh chief minister, Rajnath Singh.
Singh, who was the president of the BJP from 2005 or 2009 as well, is expected to make Rahul Gandhi's task of wooing India'a most important electoral state in the forthcoming national elections even more difficult. Uttar Pradesh elects 80 Lok Sabha members.
Congress mangers fear that Rajnath Singh and Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi -- who has made it a point to congratulate the new BJP president -- will pool their resources to make Uttar Pradesh their new battleground against the Congress, and the Gandhis.
Click on next to find out how RSS supremo Bhagwat blundered!
Image: Rajnath Singh, seen here with Nitin Gadkari and L K Advani, is expected to take on Rahul Gandhi in the next national election.
Photographs: Danish Siddiqui/Reuters
Mohan Bhagwat's BIG mistake?
Did the RSS supremo make a terrible mistake?
Despite the bravado, the mood at Jhandewalan (the RSS headquarters in New Delhi) and Nagpur (where the RSS was founded and is headquartered) is grim.
The middle and lower rung of RSS functionaries wonder if Mohan Bhagwat erred in walking the extra mile to back Nitin Gadkari's second term.
Their concern relates to the future: Would the democratic system (of seeking and going with the majority opinion) become the norm in an organisation where the sarsangchalak always had the final word?
RSS insiders say a large number of their sympathisers, supporters and functionaries lobbied hard to prompt the change.
Which has led to the question: Will consensus be the new order followed by the RSS?
Image: Does RSS supremo Mohan Bhagwat regret his decision?
Photographs: Amit Dave/Reuters