Even as the BJP commemorated the death anniversary of Jan Sangh founder Deendayal Upadhyay, the rift within the party’s state unit came out in the open with veteran party MLA Ghanshyam Tiwari calling for the sacking of Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje. Tiwari has accused Raje of betraying the founding principles of the Jan Sangh and BJP and of ruling autocratically. He also called for a investigation into the death of Deendayal Upadhyay on the lines of the probe into the disappearance of Netaji Subhash Chandra Bose.
“There is a need for leadership change in Rajasthan. The central leadership of the party needs to remove CM Vasundhara Raje or the BJP will be wiped out from Rajasthan,” Tiwari said. “The CM is running the state like Ektantra (monocracy), not Loktantra (democracy). BJP MLAs are protesting against her leadership in Barmer, Dungarpur and several other places,” he said. However, the state leadership dismissed Tiwari’s allegations.
“The people of Rajasthan chose Vasundhara Rajeji. The party won the election with a historic mandate of 163 seats while projecting her as the CM candidate. So what Tiwariji is saying has no meaning,” state BJP president Ashok Parnami said, hinting at disciplinary action against Tiwari.
“These things have a due process and we will certainly take action,” he said. Tiwari, a six-time MLA and former minister, said the RSS and its affiliates were “upset” over him being sidelined by Raje. “She is betraying the principles and the ideology of Deendayal Upadhyay and the Jan Sangh,” Tiwari said.
A senior party leader and an old RSS hand, Tiwari is the most vocal among a group of known Raje baiters in the state. Tiwari and Gulab Chand Kataria (now home minister) were at the forefront of a group of leaders opposing Raje as the party’s CM candidate ahead of the 2013 Assembly polls. Over the last two years, Tiwari has been prepping his organisation Deen Dayal Vahini as a force against Raje and the state leadership. “The RSS and all Sangh-affiliated organisations are unhappy,” he said.