NEW DELHI: BJP president Amit Shah is expected to meet upset party seniors LK Advani and Murli Manohar Joshi before the party’s manifesto launch today for the national election starting Thursday. The meeting is aimed at bringing the veterans back on board at a time the opposition has attacked Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Amit shah for benching “their gurus”.
LK Advani and Murli Manohar Joshi, founder members of the BJP, are extremely unhappy about the way they were elbowed out of the election battle this year.
Mr Advani, 91, was told that Amit Shah would contest from Gandhinagar in Gujarat, a seat the BJP patriarch has held for six terms. Mr Joshi sent out a public message to his constituency Kanpur last month that he had been told by the party he would not contest from Kanpur or anywhere in the election.
Mr Advani didn’t go public for weeks but delivered his message in a blog last week.
In the post reminding the BJP of democratic principles, he wrote that the party never considered its critics as “anti-nationals”. The opposition seized the comments as a direct jab at PM Modi and Amit Shah, who have been accusing rivals during their campaign of “speaking Pakistan’s language”.
The BJP has also been rattled by reports that opposition parties had reached out to both the veterans and were trying to convince Mr Joshi to contest against PM Modi in Varanasi – Mr Joshi had given up the seat for Mr Modi at the party’s instance and shifted to Kanpur in 2014