India Uncut

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Monday, June 06, 2005

The new mukhauta

The Indian Express analyses LK Advani's sudden changes of heart:
[W]ith his mentor Vajpayee in retirement mode, Advani needs to create an image for himself pronto that is acceptable to most of, if not all of, India. This acquires great urgency because the RSS is snapping at his heel, trying to knock him off his high pedestal and replace him with a man more pliable to Sangh control.

Most important of all is the fact that Advani has realised he is alone at the apex in BJP. That the next election will be fought with Advani, not the lovable Vajpayee, leading.

The last election that put BJP in power was a vote for Vajpayee than for BJP. It kept them in power for 6 years. Next election may well be sans Atal, or with a very reduced role.

Where will Advani draw an incomparable vote puller like Vajpayee. Clearly, the writing was on the wall - if Advani wanted to survive in politics as a prime mover and shaker, he would need to get an image makeover. [Some sics.]
This quest for "an image makeover", of course, assumes that voters are shmucks. I'm not sure that's untrue.

Note to foreign readers: "Mukhauta" means mask. It was a derogatory term used for Atal Bihari Vajpayee by critics who contended that he was the moderate face of a party that was otherwise radical; in other words, a mask.
amit varma, 12:43 PM| write to me | permalink | homepage

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