SOIRU VELIP | NT
The rebellious BJP veterans, who have decided to hold a ‘conclave’ on November 8, may not take bold decisions but definitely will send a loud and clear message to the party that a few members of the BJP’s core committee can’t take the veterans for granted.
The fissures in the BJP, which have come to the fore in the recent past, have sent a wrong message to the workers of the cadre-based party.
The Thursday’s meeting will be attended by veteran BJP leaders, including former chief minister Laxmikant Parsekar; former ministers Rajendra Arlekar, Dayanand Mandrekar, Mahadev Naik and Ramesh Tawadkar, MLAs Francis D’Souza and Michael Lobo, and others. However, there is no clarity on the venue of the meeting.
It is understood that the veterans will go hammer and tongs at some of the core committee members like state BJP president Vinay Tendulkar and South Goa MP Narendra Sawaikar.
The BJP has been in a turmoil since two former Congress MLAs – Subhash Shirodkar and Dayanand Sopte – were inducted into the party. The entry of the two former Congressmen could dent the image and credibility of the party. If the warring factions are not brought around for a patch-up then the BJP could face up to tough times during the Lok Sabha elections in 2019.
The rebel BJP veterans and other workers believe that some four-five members of the core committee are trying to dominate the party and the government taking advantage of the prolonged sickness of Chief Minister Manohar Parrikar.
Some BJP old-timers closely associated with the RSS have said the core committee has “zero standing” as its decisions are not binding on the party.
However, they have admitted that the rift in the state BJP could seriously affect the poll prospects of the party in the Lok Sabha elections, adding that the situation would have been totally different had Parrikar been politically active.
Tawadkar, who was denied party ticket for the 2017 assembly elections, has blamed Sawaikar and other office-bearers for the situation.
Recently, former Shiroda MLA Mahadev Naik also vented his ire against Sawaikar and Tendulkar for inducting his archrival Shirodkar into the party.
Parsekar has crossed swords with Tendulkar for inducting Sopte in the party without taking him and local workers into confidence.
Sources have said that some BJP MLAs strongly feel that a few party functionaries are trying to dominate the government.
The veterans and the unhappy BJP legislators may convene more meetings as strong resentment prevails in the party, whose central leaders have miserably failed to quell the rebellion.