Recent changes in BJP politics proves one thing for sure that no place is certain for any member in the party, even if you have close ties with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. First it was Smriti Irani who once looked like a protégé of NaMo and taking important decisions for the betterment of our future generations the but later only to find herself at making choices between what is better fabric to make clothes? (Ok, we are oversimplifying Mrs. Irani’s work, but you got the point, right!) And now Mr. Modi successor as Gujarat Chief Minister, Anandiben Patel ron Wednesday submitted her resignation to Governor OP Kohli.
Anandiben Patel, who was in the midst of several challenges, announced her decision on Facebook to step down on Monday, saying it was time for new leadership to take over as she was soon going to turn 75. Both Smriti Irani and Anandiben Patel are handpicked by Narendra Modi and many politics pundits argue that both couldn’t have risen to such heights if they are not NaMo favourites. Just 2 years later, both Anandiben Patel and Smriti Irani were ordered to step down from their respective posts from party officials. It does raise an important question – Is Prime Minister Modi started taking “party first” motto seriously and now making decisions after consulting with other party members? Or RSS is the one who is making important decisions behind the scenes and adding more pro-RSS supporter in the team to fulfil their Hindutva agenda?
Neither Irani, nor Anandiben was a nominee of either Bharatiya Janata Party or the RSS. They were handpicked and given prominent positions simply because they identified themselves so closely with Modi. That was their identity, their sole source of strength. Both Anandiben Patel and Smriti Irani faced huge criticism for their lack of knowledge about their irrespective fields and capability to run the department, Anandiben Patel criticised for not being a worthy successor of NaMo, Under Anandiben Patel, BJP could not do well in the December 2015 local body elections in the state. For the first time in almost 25 years, Opposition Congress managed to win majority of seats and this is the reason why majority of BJP member wanted her to leave the government. Same can be said about Smriti Irani and her term in HRD ministry, the decisions she made as HRD Minister were mostly turned out to be controversial and party always had to intervene in the matter at last. Now back to our first question
Is Prime Minister Modi started taking “party first” motto seriously and now making decisions after consulting with other party members?
Though they have close ties with NaMo(now, maybe?) but there’s no denying that both Smriti Irani and Anandiben Patel are not very popular within the party organization, when Smriti Irani took an oath as HRD Minister in 2014, many party workers opposes the decision made by Modi given her lack of knowledge about the governance, Smriti Irani is known as ‘Outsider’ of the party. On the other side, Gujarat BJP members approved Anandiben Patel as the next CM of Gujarat but things took a left turn after the whole Patel agitations exposed the weaknesses of Anandiben Patel in difficult decision making scenarios and this leads the increase of opposition voices against Anandiben within the party. Modi decision to drop both of them is to send message to party workers that their voices were heard by him and he also believes in BJP “Party-First” motto, If that’s the case than BJP workers of Noida should take tips from Gujarat BJP organization about how to remove the leader from his position! Our second question was Is RSS the one who is making important decisions behind the scenes and adding more pro-RSS supporter in the team to fulfil their Hindutva agenda?
Both the HRD Ministry and the government of Gujarat are central to the RSS’ scheme of things is hardly a secret. But while the HRD Ministry under Irani was simply not being able to carry out the RSS agenda silently and without generating any controversy, Gujarat under Anandiben’s government appeared roiled first by Patidar agitations and then by Dalit protests. And these are the reason both of them stepped down from their post. RSS saffron scheme in HRD Ministry is working perfectly fine with Smriti Irani replacement Prakash Javdekar, who also enjoys a great RSS rapport and now RSS is looking to make the same changes in Gujarat government after the so much negative press report, they faced in recent Dalit protests. Like HRD Minister Prakash Javdekar who is silently carrying the hindutva agenda without making much fuss about it in fact, in less than a month after assuming office, he has already attended at least four meetings with bodies linked to the RSS. Rastriya Swayamsewak Sangh is working with Amit Shah to find some similar candidate like Prakash Javdekar as Gujarat Chief Minister, As of now the search is still on.
This takeover of Union HRD Ministry and Gujarat weather it’s done by Modi (due to party protest) or RSS does not, by any means, imply a rift between them. The only thing that it signals is these: RSS has started closing in, and Modi has obliged or Modi started listening to others as well ,even if that means sacrificing his picks one by one.