Looking at the controversies and growing anger against Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Bihar elections ahead, RSS has decided to analyse the progress record of its political wing.
The party’s dependence on the parent’s organization has always been present. In fact, at least 60 per cent of the BJP cadre is proud of their Sangh background. The percentage is even higher in the Hindi hinterland and states like Maharashtra. BJP has derived efficient leaders from the organisation or its front organisations. The group acts as a “mentor and a fatherly figure” to the BJP. RSS wields the power to decide the President of the BJP, about 30-40 RSS delegates are placed at different levels within the BJP. It’s an exercise that takes place every few years. That’s exactly how BJP got its phenomenal leaders such as Atal Bihari Vajpayee and L K Advani.
It’s an open secret that RSS workers had put their whole strength during the campaigning for the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. BJP’s PM candidate Narendra Modi was also a choice made by the RSS. Acting as the parent organisation to BJP, it had gone full throttle to ensure Modi’s victory. Although RSS had tried to maintain a “discreet distance” from the BJP, it didn’t think twice before showing solidarity with BJP in public and getting involved during the poll campaigns.
It can’t be said, whether BJP will ever come out of the shadow of the RSS, but sure, the party might not be able to “shake off this dependence.”
Ahead of the RSS coordination meet, BJP president Amit Shah met several union ministers and party officials to discuss coordination between the party and the government on popularising government’s pet schemes.
Though there was no official word from the party, sources said the BJP is worried that the work of the National Democratic Alliance government is not being properly communicated among the public and despite efforts the government is still getting negative publicity. According to sources, the issue was discussed in the meeting. Top Union Ministers and leaders of the BJP will attend the crucial three-day coordination meet of the RSS and its affiliates; Modi too will participate in the meet.
Issues like spreading of the organisation, census figures, One Rank One Pension (OROP) demand by the ex-servicemen and the recent agitation of Patidars in Gujarat are expected to come up for discussion. Ninety three main functionaries of the RSS and its 15 affiliates are expected to “exchange notes” over relevant issues during the meeting. The Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh or RSS will review the Narendra Modi government’s performance in the last 15 months.
The latest religious census, which indicated a decline in the Hindu population below the 80-crore mark and a marginal increase in Muslim population, is expected to be discussed, as will the One Rank One Pension demand of ex-servicemen that the government has been grappling with. The RSS has said such reviews are done routinely, mainly to ensure better coordination between its affiliates, the BJP and the government. RSS has brought the feedback of thousands of its members to the meeting and sees the need for a “course correction” ahead of crucial assembly elections in Bihar to be held within a month or two. Affiliates like the Swadeshi Jagran Manch are against genetically modified crops, Foreign Direct Investment, strategic sale of government assets to raise money and opening Indian banks to foreign companies – all key to the Modi government’s long-term economic agenda.
The Swadeshi Jagran Manch had also joined protests against the controversial changes the government had planned in the law to acquire land. The Sangh apprehends that the government has earned an anti-farmer tag by pushing the land bill, which it has now buried. Other Sangh affiliates like the Vishwa Hindu Parishad are pushing for a bigger say in education and syllabus.
There are many such issues that is denting BJP’s image these days, and because of these issues somewhere Modi’s popularity has also declined. If the issues, those that went aggressive against the saffron party will not be addressed in time then it will be proved that people have voted for the party for a change. Let’s see how Bihar election and RSS’s new strategy changes the fate of BJP in present crises.