Rajnath Singh to replace Gadkari

Jan 23, 2013, 06:48 IST | Ravikiran Deshmukh

Drama unfolded late last evening with BJP top leaders refusing to back Gadkari for a second term as party chief

After weeks of drama surrounding the second term of BJP president Nitin Gadkari, the party has decided to replace Gadkari with Rajnath Singh.

According to a senior leader of the party, the higher ups of the BJP huddled in discussions after Yashwant Sinha’s move to procure a nomination form and list of voters. It was perceived, as a threat to Gadkari as voting would have been necessitated on Wednesday.

Rajnath Singh

If this had happened the anti-Gadkari camp would have rebelled and ensured a showdown plunging the principal opposition party of the nation into a major crisis, said sources.

Until late evening on Tuesday, everything was going as per the plan but the Income Tax department’s move to summon the companies that have invested funds in Purti Group, led by Gadkari turned the tables.

Taking over: Nitin Gadkari submitted his resignation yesterday, and Rajnath Singh  is all set to take over as BJP president

All attempts by Gadkari to ward off the crisis failed with top BJP leaders questioning a second term as party president to the Nagpur man.

The party decided to rely on Rajnath Singh who is from Uttar Pradesh. Singh was former Uttar Pradesh chief minister and held the reins of the party twice.

The RSS lobby that was batting for Gadkari too favoured him because of his image. It was also to unnerve the anti-Gadkari camp. Even senior leader L K Advani’s suggestions were ignored, said the sources. 

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