Has the Bharatiya Janata Party lost its political plot?
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Wednesday expelled former finance minister Jaswant Singh from its primary membership for praising Pakistan founder Muhammad Ali Jinnah in a book.
As a visibly upset Singh, a founding member of the party, questioned the decision, the latest controversy to hit the BJP seems to have brought its internal conflicts out in the open.
Many pressing issues haunt the party as it begins its ‘Chintan Baithak’ – an annual brainstorming session.
The BJP was drubbed at the 2009 general election and faced a leadership crisis. Its elderly leaders are perceived as being out of sync with a young vote base and it has had an ideological falling out with its Hindu right-wing parent.
The BJP may need to take a hard look at these issues if it hopes to reinvent itself.
Singh’s book and its fallout have led some liberal thinkers in politics to question the wisdom of meting out punishment to an individual for expressing a personal opinion especially since larger issues like revamping the organizational structure of the party and its revival need to be addressed.
It is ironical that the controversy over Singh’s expulsion happened on the day the BJP top brass met in Shimla to chart out its future course of action after a dismal showing in the general election.
Do you think the expulsion of Singh, a veteran national level leader with a career spanning three decades, is yet another example of the BJP losing the political plot? Will it be able to resurrect itself in time for the next election?