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19 July 2011

Magician Narendra Modi continues to charm arch rivals

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By Abdul Hafiz Lakhani

Ahmedabad: Narendra Modi, the Chief Minister of Gujarat, wants to create history in Gujarat politics by winning at least 150 assembly seats in coming election in state which will be held in next year. To achieve this goal he wants to befriend his one time arch rival Sanjay Joshi now.

Despite displeasure from certain sections in Gujarat BJP, fresh efforts have been initiated in Delhi to get former party general secretary Sanjay Joshi back into the party fold and use his services for the forthcoming Uttar Pradesh elections.

BJP plans to use Joshi’s services in forthcoming Uttar Pradesh pollsA Delhi BJP source told, “Sanjay Joshi is likely to be rehabilitated back with due dignity in BJP. Because of pressure and displeasure of certain influential elements, for the time being Joshi will not be allowed to participate or interfere in Gujarat’s party affairs. However, he will be there at the national level.”

According to sources, Minister of State Amit Shah and Sanjay Joshi also recently met at a BJP MP’s residence in Delhi. After the Joshi CD case had surfaced, both of them were not in touch with each other.

It is not known whether the Shah-Joshi meeting was an informal impromptu meeting or an organised effort by Gujarat BJP to send any signals to Joshi.

A national BJP leader told that Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) chief Mohan Bhagwat has given a green signal to Joshi’s “homecoming” and BJP president Nitin Gadkari is looking forward to his induction. “We expect some direct or indirect resistance from Gujarat but we are ready with some modalities”, the source added.

Joshi and Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi have not been on good terms since quite some time. Joshi is very popular among Gujarat BJP and only a small set of Modimen are against his re-entry, a state BJP officer-bearer said.

Joshi had to resign following a sexually-explicit compact disc which reportedly featured him with a woman. The buzz in national BJP was that the CD was fabricated to ruin his bright career and there were big heads behind this sleaze operation.

Most BJP leaders at national and state level say Joshi was framed and the CD was fabricated only to malign his reputation.

Uma Bharti Model

However, the BJP, which faces leadership bankruptcy at national level cannot afford to ignore Modi. Hence sources say Joshi will be rehabilitated with strict condition to stay away from Gujarat. The BJP at national level is in a desperate need for good sincere workers with outstanding organisational skills and nobody fits the bill better than Joshi.

Sources say Joshi’s entry formula will be similar to Uma Bharti model. There was protest against re-induction of Bharati too and despite displeasure expressed by Madhya Pradesh Chief Minister Shivrajsinh Chauhan, she was inducted back on the condition that she will stay away from MP and MP politics. The same strategy, sources say, will be worked out in Joshi case.

Sources say Joshi will be given a specific assignment in Uttar Pradesh and hence it should not upset Modi.

The source claimed that Joshi’s induction is likely to be formalised within the party before August 1 and an announcement maybe made at an appropriate time.

Sources said RSS is very keen to rehabilitate Sanjay Joshi and Sushma Swaraj is openly supporting his reinduction. Since Gadkari is close to RSS honchos in Nagpur, it is being speculated that Sanjay Joshi will soon return with a big bang in the BJP.

The party may rope in L K Advani to coax Modi not to oppose Sanjay Joshi’s induction and at the same time ensure that Joshi is kept away from Gujarat.

“At the end of the day, Joshi and Modi are brothers and they should bury differences in the larger interest of the party”, the source said.

[Abdul Hafiz Lakhani is a senior Journalist based at Ahmedabad, Gujarat. He is associated with IndianMuslimObserver.com as Bureau Chief (Gujarat). He can be reached at lakhani63@yahoo.com or on his cell 09228746770]

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