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BJP Future - 4
  <b> He was a mass leader who bound the party together - Atal Bihari Vajpayee, Former Prime Minister

He was at the prime of his ability. It is not just a loss for the party. The political order of India has lost an asset - Jaswant Singh, BJP leader

I have always benefitted by having him as a companion when I was leader of the house in RS. He was of invaluable help. He was a stalwart - Jaswant Singh, BJP leader

We have lost the most dynamic leader of our times. He was one of the most competent ministers India has ever had - Rajiv Shukla, Congress Leader

It is with deep regret that we announce the untimely death of Pramod Mahajan. He finally succumbed to the bullet injuries. We tried our level best to save him - Dr Gustad Davar, Hinduja Hospital

He was a dynamic leader. We are very sorry on his untimely demise - MM Joshi, BJP leader

It is a big blow to all of us. He was like a big brother - Ravi Shankar Prasad, BJP leader

It is not just a loss for the BJP but also for the country. There are very few leaders of his stature. - Yashwant Sinha, BJP leader </b>

No statement from Uma Bharati or Khurana, they were so eager to release fake sex DVD of Pramod Mahajan as they did for Sanjay Joshi, just to bring him down.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->"He held key positions in the party and carried out all his responsibilities well," Vajpayee said.

In his characteristic poetic style, the veteran BJP leader mourned Mahajan's death as an untimely loss of a dynamic young leader.

<b><i>"Bina badlon ke bijli girne ki charcha hamne suni hai. Yahan apni akhon se bharat ki tarunai ko puri tarah se viksit hone se pehle hi kaalchakra ne isko ham se cheen liya!" </i></b>

(we have heard about lightening hitting without clouds. Her we saw India's youth being snatched away even before it could develop fully), he said.
<b>Chanakyas and Mahajans not born everyday</b>

<b>I don't mind being called a pervert: Mahajan</b>
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->When a reporter pointed to the Congress criticism describing his view that Prime Ministership should be restricted to those born of Indian parents showed his pervert mind, the BJP leader replied, "If this is called a pervert mindset, I don't mind being called a pervert."<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

<b>No leader is god: Pramod Mahajan</b>
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->New Delhi, January 23: Introspecting on the importance of ideology, senior BJP leader Pramod Mahajan has said that ‘no leader is god’ and the ‘chariot of BJP's dharmaraj has touched the ground’.

“No leader is god; everybody has a feet of clay. No power is permanent; many times it vanishes even before you feel it,” he said in an article on ‘Role of Ideology in Polity’ in the latest issue of RSS mouthpiece Organiser
somehow i do not think so pramod mahajan was anywhere as good as a chanakya.

but i am saddened by the news. it may be hard to replace him, though arun shourie may be a very good replacement. or sushma swaraj.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Rest in peace </b>
The Pioneer Edit Desk
Pramod Mahajan, a true leader ---- Whenever he was buffeted by a political storm, and there were many in the two-and-a-half decades that Pramod Mahajan spent in the BJP, he would resolutely battle on, refusing to accept defeat. Indeed, numerous are the occasions when he snatched victory for the BJP from the jaws of defeat and loss, on the electoral battlefield and while negotiating alliances. Yet, on Wednesday he lost the last battle of his life after valiantly fighting death for 12 days in the intensive care unit of a Mumbai hospital.

It's almost as if he was destined to lose this battle against the grim reaper. It's a tragic and cruel end to a promising career as a politician; those who knew him personally, will feel the painful loss of a friend who would always be there when you needed him most. For the BJP, Pramod Mahajan's death has come as a body blow: The party will be bereft of his organisational skills and his ability to transcend party lines to acquire friends and allies without which perhaps the National Democratic Alliance would never have been born, nor would the BJP ever have come to power in Maharashtra.

His critics would often berate him for being a 'pragmatist' but Pramod Mahajan wore his pragmatism on his sleeves, just as he wore his ideological commitment as a badge of honour. His loyalty to the BJP was absolute and beyond reproach; the party was his sole passion. Over the years he made the BJP into a modern political machinery with the help of both technology and a forward-looking agenda in tune with the aspirations of 21st century India. He truly represented the BJP's gen-next leadership, brimming with ideas to catch the popular imagination - Mr LK Advani's hugely successful Ram rath yatra of 1990 that catapulted him and the BJP into the centrestage of national politics was master-minded by Pramod Mahajan - and to keep in tune with changing ground realities and voter preferences.

The 2004 election campaign may have not fetched victory for the BJP, but it would be grossly unfair and wholly incorrect to blame Pramod Mahajan's visionary use of new technology and media to connect with the masses. When he spoke at public meetings, he effortlessly connected with the youth who saw him as one of them rather than a 56-year-old politician seeking votes. As a spokesman, he was articulate and media savvy, yet he never promoted himself over his party, a trait not shared by many of his colleagues.

Equally at ease among unwashed masses and India's powerful movers and shakers, he never allowed himself to be carried away either by adulation or craven sycophancy. His earnestness while addressing a rally or answering a mediaperson's query was not a politician's act, but the manifestation of his unshakeable faith in India and its indigenous abilities.

When the sun sets on Thursday, the country would have bid farewell to an illustrious son of the soil who rose from his humble origins to dizzying heights of power, thus proving that conventional disadvantages can be overcome through grit and determination. The BJP would be clearly hobbled by his absence, but that is not how Pramod Mahajan would have wanted it. The party organisation, as he would often say, should be such that individuals cease to matter. But the void left by individuals is not easy to fill. Pramod Mahajan will be missed - by the country, by the BJP, by his friends and by his family. May his soul rest in peace.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Pramod was a caring, generous friend
Kanchan Gupta | New Delhi
When the mission in Cairo was informed that a parliamentary delegation would be visiting Egypt, a collective groan went up. It's not easy to handle MPs, especially when there are more than a score of them demanding attention and hospitality.

The only saving grace, I pointed out to my colleagues, is that Pramod Mahajan is leading the group, so relax. That only helped raise hackles. He is haughty and has a terrible temper, said one. He is the Parliamentary Affairs Minister and will want all of us at his beck and call, said another. He will demand extravagant hospitality, a third slyly pointed out.

None of this, of course, was proved correct. Pramod Mahajan was at his laid back best. All that he wanted was a day off from the grind of an official visit. We went off to Alexandria where he spent the better part of the day at Bibliotheca Alexandrina, stumping its redoubtable librarian Ismail Serageldin with his knowledge of Indic numerals, Arab trade and Greco-Roman philosophy.

I had to literally drag him away, partly because Serageldin's secretary kept on whispering to me that he was running behind schedule for other appointments and largely because Pramod Mahajan needed to have his lunch. Later, over a leisurely seafood meal, he wistfully said, "I wish we could build a library like this in India. But by the time I would be able to get all clearances, probably our Government would be gone." His words were to prove prophetic.

Back in Cairo, we visited the Giza pyramids where Pramod Mahajan asked a one-minute-photographer to take a picture of us standing in front of Cheops' tomb. "You see, people confuse all the three pyramids as part of the seven wonders of the world, but it's only Cheops' pyramid that is a wonder," he explained. When the photo came, he inscribed on it, "My dear Kanchan, Do you know what's older than the pyramids? Friendship! Pramod."

Our friendship began on an afternoon in 1995 when I knocked on the door of his modest, sparsely furnished MP's apartment in which he then lived in Delhi. The Pioneer was planning a special issue on how young leaders perceive India's future. Would he please agree to contribute an article? Pramod Mahajan first demurred, saying he was off to London the next evening, and then agreed. He turned in his piece - not ghost-written because it needed some editing! - the following day before leaving for London.

After he returned a fortnight later, I met him with a copy of the paper since he had not seen the printed version. "I had the article read out to me by Vivek (his secretary)," he said, and then gifted me a Parker. He cared in the most touching way. Years later, before coming to Cairo, he asked my wife what could he get her from Delhi. Asafoetida, she said. And it came.

There was something extremely endearing about Pramod Mahajan; irrespective of the stress and strain of politics, he would not forget the smallest human gesture of kindness and warmth. Soon after I gave up my job to work for the BJP, the 1996 general election was announced and Pramod Mahajan was made chairman of the national campaign committee of which he made me a member.

We would meet in his apartment early morning for strategy sessions. I doubt if he had a working kitchen those days (his wife would be in Mumbai most of the time) because he would order breakfast - idli and ipma followed by milky sweet tea - from downstairs. Those were tense days but Pramod Mahajan would not forget to ensure we were well fed for the rest of the day.

At one meeting, I casually picked up his Erickson cell phone, one of the early models, and asked him if I could make a call. "No, you must use your own phone... Here, take this." And he reached into his other kurta pocket and gave me my first cell phone.

Pramod Mahajan was generous to a fault. Once I casually mentioned to him that I wanted to take my wife and child to Kolkata for a vacation. It was during Durga Puja and there was a huge waiting list on every train; could I use his office to get train reservations? "Leave the travel details with Vivek." I did. The next day when I reached my office at 11, Ashoka Road, there was a packet waiting for me with return air tickets. No, Pramod Mahajan was not a Minister those days.

Contrary to popular notion, he led a Spartan life and lavished gifts on friends who were always welcome at any time of the day or night. He was caring and thoughtful, remembering each detail of every conversation. If he lost his cool, which he did - and how! - he would remember to give you a hug, slap your back and send you off on an assignment.

That's how we worked during three elections - 1996, 1998 and 1999. We would make mistakes and there would be serious errors of judgement. But Pramod Mahajan would always be there to fix them, quietly, silently, without ever taking recourse to rebuke or criticism.

I have had the unique opportunity to know Pramod Mahajan as a ruthless politician and a sensitive human being. I shall cherish those moments which will remind me of a friend who was also a politician.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Pramod Mahajan and me have been colleagues in the Lok Sabha and the Rajaya Sabha, and have shared each other's joys and sorrows at personal level. His death is a big personal loss to me - <b>Uma Bharati , Bharatiya Janshakti Party president</b> <!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>Mahajan embodied the spirit and vibrancy of young India. He was a forward-looking leader who had the vision and determination to guide India towards a bright and prosperous future - David Mulford, US Ambassador to India</b><!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
Why he had issued statement?
<!--QuoteBegin-ben_ami+May 3 2006, 09:42 PM-->QUOTE(ben_ami @ May 3 2006, 09:42 PM)<!--QuoteEBegin-->somehow i do not think so pramod mahajan was anywhere as good as a chanakya.

but i am saddened by the news. it may be hard to replace him, though arun shourie may be a very good replacement. or sushma swaraj.
Ben, let people atleast mourn in peace. Mahajan was one of the few leaders who cannot be replaced. He deserves utmost respect at this time.

I wished that he survive this ordeal, but I am saddened deeply by his premature demise.

I pray for his atmashanthi.

A man of the modern world

Neena Vyas

Mr. Mahajan was regarded as more realistic, less bombastic, and less pretentious than some of his colleagues. He was equally at home with an Ambani or a Tata as with a paanwala, equally friendly towards editors and reporters — his de-briefings were a delight, giving those in the media useful insights of games played in the corridors of power. And, thankfully, he was brutally frank about the nature of politics and politicians, understanding clearly that it was power — not morals — that made their world go round. He had nothing of the self-righteous priggishness that characterised his party.
<b>Mahajan's mortal remains consigned to flames </b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->After a police bugler sounded the last post, the contingent of 16 cops led by their sword-wielding leader reversed their arms as a mark of respect to the departed leader.

Mahajan's brother Prakash, brother-in-law Gopinath Munde and close associate Sudhanshu Mittal broke down and were comforted by party leaders and workers.

Earlier, Mr Vajpayee, Vice President Bhairon Singh Shekhawat, Union Ministers Sharad Pawar, Murli Deora and Praful Patel, besides Chief Ministers of five BJP-ruled States and Mr Nitish Kumar of Bihar paid floral tributes to Mr Mahajan, who died Wednesday after fighting gunshot injuries for 12 days. While Mahajan's younger brother, Pravin, who shot him is in jail, Pravin's wife and children kept away from the cremation.

Wreaths on behalf of President A P J Abdul Kalam were laid by Major General Vinod Chopra, while Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil represented Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh.

State Chief Secretary D K Shankaran laid wreath on behalf of Lok Sabha Speaker Somnath Chatterjee, while former Uttar Pradesh Governor Moti Lal Vora paid floral respects on behalf of Congress president Sonia Gandhi.

<b>NDA convenor George Fernandes had to be helped by former External Affairs Minister Jaswant Singh to enable the former pay his respects to the departed leader</b>.

Union Minister Sharad Pawar and Praful Patel, <b>RSS Chief K S Sudarshan, VHP firebrand leader Praveen Togadia</b>, NDA Convener George Fernandes, Maharashtra Chief Minister Vilasrao Deshmukh, Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar and Chief Ministers of all BJP-ruled states including<b> Gujarat's Narendra Modi and Sena leader Uddhav Thackeray </b>were present, reflecting the late leader's popularity across the country's political spectrum.

Shops along the roads from where the procession passed remained closed and party flags, posters were put up there.

Earlier, police contingent gave a ceremonial salute before the body was put in an open truck.

Mahajan's body was brought to the cremation grounds in a funeral procession which wound its way through the streets of Mumbai from his Worli residence, where he was shot at and injured by Pravin on April 22.

Relatives, senior leaders cutting across party lines and people from all walks of life made a beeline to his home where the body was brought this morning.

Mahajan's party colleagues, who paid homage, included Jaswant Singh, Murli Manohar Joshi, Sushma Swaraj, Arun Jaitley, Venkaiah Naidu, Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi, Vijay Kumar Malhotra, Sahib Singh Verma, industrialists Anil Ambani, Naresh Goyal, media baron and Rajya Sabha MP Vijay Darda, Lok Sabha MP Haren Pathak, Bollywood personalities Hema Malini, Poonam Dhillon, Madhur Bhandarkar, Ashok Pandit, Janmorcha President Raj Babbar.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
Looks like Fernandes is very sick.
It means rumors are true, Togadia's anti Mahajan rant was for media consumption.
His motto: ‘Never say die’

Obituary: Pramod Mahajan (1949-2006)

The death of the BJP’s master strategist and fundraiser, Pramod Mahajan, came at a time when the party, not in the best of health, desperately needed him. A thinker, tactician, an excellent orator regarded second only to former Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee, Pramod Mahajan was the BJP’s “ultimate crisis manager”. His networking cut across political lines. Mr Vajpayee had anointed him as the future face of the BJP by describing Mr L.K. Advani as “Ram” and Mahajan as “Lakshman”. Dogged by controversy, Mahajan was also graceful in defeat.

While Mr L.K. Advani was the chief architect of the BJP’s failed “India Shining” and “Feel Good” campaigns, it was Mahajan who stepped forward to take full blame for the party’s debacle in the last general elections. He would often say; “No battle is lost till the last ship is sunk.” Asked once whether the party’s debacle could mean the end of the road for him, he laughed and said, “Isn’t there a movie called Never Say Die? Where is the question of dying at 54?” But Pramod Mahajan, 56, passed away at 4.10 pm in Mumbai on Wednesday of medical complications arising from being shot three times by his brother Pravin Mahajan.

The BJP’s success story at the national level started from Maharashtra when Pramod Mahajan struck a strategic alliance with the Shiv Sena in 1989, a masterstroke that felled the Congress in the state in 1995. From then on Mahajan dominated Maharashtra politics. Though the BJP was in power in States like Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh and Gujarat (in its Janata Party avatar), its march towards Delhi began from Mumbai when it realised that it could come to power only through a coalition, and not solely on its Hindu agenda.

He was perhaps the second saffron leader from Maharashtra, after Mr Nanaji Deshmukh, to be known for his organisational skills. Like his mentor Vajpayee, Mahajan too tried to build his political constituency outside the BJP. He later emerged as Mr Vajpayee’s trouble-shooter. Born in 1949, the journey of this charismatic leader began from Ambejogai, in Beed district of Marathwada. It was the socio-political centre of this region.

The phenomenal growth of a son of a school teacher at the national level in a short span is appreciated even by his political rivals. Like other second-rung political leaders of various parties, like Madhavrao Scindia, Rajesh Pilot, R. Kumarmangalam and Jitendra Prasada, Mahajan also died in the middle of a very promising political career.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->Journey of a lifetime
Balbir K Punj |
The immediate fallout of Pramod Mahajan's untimely and tragic death was the cancellation of the two Bharat Suraksha yatras by Mr LK Advani and Mr Rajnath Singh. The situation is made more poignant by the fact that Mr Mahajan was the organiser of Mr Advani's 1990 Ram rath yatra as well, that repositioned the BJP in the firmament of national politics. In 1990, the yatra was aborted in Samastipur, Bihar, for "secular" reasons. This time the cause is shockingly different and more painful. The journey did not culminate in Shivaji Park (Raja Garden) Delhi as planned; instead, tens of thousand of people met tearfully at Shivaji Park Crematorium, Mumbai, where Mahajan's last rites were performed.

I was in Mumbai recently during the Maharastra-lap of the yatra when I had read a headline in a national daily, 'Advani makes the crowd wait in scorching sun'. Its crux was Mr Advani's yatra, hugely welcome at previous stopovers, was running two hours behind schedule. He was feted by a sea of humanity in Gujarat and Maharashtra. But the report wrongly said that Mr Advani was holding a section of people hostage.

If it had been Ms Sonia Gandhi's road show, the same newspaper would have said that the people waiting in scorching sun were her diehard supporters. This is one example of how cynical the national media has been towards Bharat Suraksha yatra. It may have largely ignored the yatris as they trudged on. The same, however, is not true about the regional and vernacular press that provided an objective picture.

I was with Mr Advani in Gujarat, Maharashtra, and Andhra Pradesh segments of the yatra. Wherever it went, it met with huge receptions. Navsari in Gujarat is a small Parsi town. It appeared as if the whole town was out to welcome Mr Advani. It was massive turnout at Chikhali, Valsad, Pardl, Vapi and Bhilad. At places one could see a phalanx of people, in a half-kilometre long chains, standing to welcome the yatra.

The national media first said the yatra was a flop as it began from Rajkot on April 6. But the scale of its reception on first 246 km from Rajkot to Ahmedabad at Aatkot, Jasdan, Vinchiya, Paliyad, Bavia, to name a few places, made the media rethink. They attributed it to Mr Narendra Modi's mobilising skills, and the fact that Gujarat is both BJP bastion and Mr Advani's adopted State.

But as the yatra entered Maharashtra, we were in for a happy surprise. Acchad is a sunbaked place, virtually shorn of greenery. The BJP has little presence there. But tribesmen turned out in large numbers in their traditional attire and musical instruments. Many more such small non-descript towns like Bori, Pandharhavda, Karanji, Wadhi, Wadhera, Hingan Ghat, Jamb and Bubbori are etched in my mind for their sheer response. In Andhra Pradesh, Mr Advani received a rousing reception in Hyderabad, Medchal, Toopran, Ramayampet, Nirmal and Adilabad.

I shall not ascribe this overwhelming reception to his stature in public life alone. In these parts of the country, the people seldom get to see or hear a national leader in person. The arrival of a national leader, irrespective of his party, turns into a festive occasion. The leader also benefits.

The yatra is ridiculed on the ground that the rath is air-conditioned. The rath might be air-conditioned but much of India's roads are bad. Air-condition, quite necessary during a long road journey in April-May, is small consolation if one has to disembark every 20 km in the scorching sun. It is a tough day that begins at 9 am and ends midnight with Mr Advani coming out at least a score of times to address big and small wayside meetings and accepting greetings from thousands, which includes hundreds of BJP activists who are known to him personally. Mr Advani is running 79. I personally attribute his mettle to undertake a yatra to two things; one, his frugal eating habits; and two, an element of divinity in him.

Mr Advani announced 'Ekta yatra' (which was changed to Bharat Suraksha yatra) on the morrow of the serial blasts in Varanasi on March 7. The 'secular' media went hammer and tongs predicting that Mr Advani's yatra will vitiate the communal atmosphere. There is no record of Mr Advani's yatras leading to communal tension anywhere in the country. We have a history of communal tensions that predates even the Jana Sangh.

The truth is that the announcement of the Bharat Suraksha yatra might have been precipitated by the Varanasi bomb blast but not its concept. It is a critical build up of threat to national security since the UPA Government took over in May 2004. It appears resigned to terrorism whether jihadi or Maoist. To pander to Muslim vote-bank it scrapped POTA, which was legislated after a Security Council meet felt that anti-terrorist laws were inadequate to meet global terror. POTA was not only effective in prosecuting terrorists but also in stopping the funding of terrorism. During NDA regime 45/50 ISI sleeper cells were busted every year. The figure has now come down to 15/20.

The charge sheet gets longer. <b>One, reservation for Muslims in jobs and educational institutions in Andhra Pradesh (five per cent) and reservation in post-graduate professional courses in AMU (50 per cent); two, attempt to manipulate the report on religious demography in 2001 Census; three, appointing the Rajinder Sachar Committee which recommended quota for Muslims in the armed forces; four, bringing back IMDT through the backdoor by amending Foreigners Act, 1946 exclusively for Assam; five, exponential growth of Maoism, largely due to Andhra Pradesh under the Congress rescinding ban on the terrorists. </b>

<b>A fortnight before the yatra began, the Kerala Legislative Assembly, where the BJP has no presence, passed a unanimous resolution exhorting the Tamil Nadu Government to release on parole Abdul Nasser Madni, accused of 1998 Coimbatore serial bomb blasts. Now the UPA Government is planning for ill-advised de-militarisation of Siachen.</b>

Pramod Mahajan has gone, but his legacy will continue to inspire the BJP. The two yatras might have had to be terminated, but they created a mass awareness. Not surprisingly, Mr Advani has said that the NDA is sure to unseat the UPA if snap poll were to be held.

BJP should groom Gorakhpur MP for national politics. He can take Mahajan place.
Sad to see someone of Mahajan's stature pass away.

Also sad to see that he had to suffer so much before the end came.

I hope BJP takes good lessons from this episode and rely even less on individuals and work on processes that makes the organisation resilient.
BJP has a bright future to start a new industry in kerala - selling votes to congress and Muslim league.


<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->in the 2004 Lok Sabha elections, its candidate, former Union Minister O. Rajagopal, got a never-before 2,28,052 votes (29.86 per cent of the votes) in the prestigious fight in Thiruvananthapuram.

But what followed was a lacklustre campaign. The BJP failed even to provide its candidate with agents in many polling booths and Padmanabhan could manage only 36,690 votes, a mere 4.83 per cent of the total votes polled. He lost his deposit in the only Lok Sabha constituency where the BJP proved its strength in 2004.

Rajagopal, who perhaps represents the most credible face of the BJP in Kerala, pointed out that the party had earlier found <b>Mukundan guilty of trading its votes to the Congress-led United Democratic Front (UDF), and had removed him as organising secretary and asked him to shift his headquarters to Chennai</b>. When he refused, the then party president, M. Venkaiah Naidu, had personally intervened to shift him to Chennai. But in the run-up to the Thiruvananthapuram byelection, Mukundan pitched tent at the party headquarters in Thiruvananthapuram, ignoring the directive of the leadership, he said.

Asked whether the guilty would be removed from the BJP, <b>Rajagopal made the most startling of all his allegations</b>. He said: "The troubles within the party are being engineered by those who amassed wealth using the party's address. It is said the individual wealth today of the most prominent among them would be over Rs.10 crores. You must be aware of the petrol pump deals. <b>One of them has very close links with a construction company that is associated with underworld don Dawood Ibrahim</b>. This individual has even acquired a residential flat from them for free."

Even its most popular leader, K.G. Marar, was defeated in Manjewaram, where the party then had its most prominent presence. <b>According to one of the members of the party inquiry committee, trading votes with the Congress-led coalition also led to the Muslim League, a UDF constituent, getting the maximum number of seats in the State Assembly then.</b>

From all indications, what started as a strategic trade-off with the UDF, perhaps under the genuine impression that the UDF would then help the BJP to win a seat or two in the Assembly or in the local bodies, <b>soon deteriorated into regular vote-for-money deals that were used by a section of leaders to amass wealth</b> - an allegation raised against the BJP by its political rivals for long and now corroborated by the statements of O. Rajagopa
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->BJP has a bright future to start a new industry in kerala - selling votes to congress and Muslim league.
Sorry, that market's already cornered by Commies to accomodate any newcomer on the block. Check the monitoring commies thread and respond there.
<b>Modi inches towards BJP centre</b><!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->The only obstacle now to his rise to the BJP’s top is the widespread antipathy he has evoked in Gujarat alone. The violence in Vadodara, sources said, <b>has a lot to do with the desire in the state unit of the BJP and the VHP to expose the truth about his makeover from Hindu Hriday Samrat to development messiah.</b>

<b>BJP workers close to Keshubhai Patel, such as former MLA Nalin Bhat, were said to be involved in the demolition of the dargah that sparked the clashes. Nalin and councillors close to him —Rakesh Patel, Arvind Patel, Chandrakant Thakkar, Lalit Raj, Harish Shevani and Yogesh Patel — were with the municipal corporation team when it started the demolition.</b>

But a sign of which way the wind is blowing comes from a statement by <b>Surat MP Kashiram Rana. No friend of Modi’s, he said: “Violence has been put down firmly. The government has acted as it should have.”</b><!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->

`India a nation of clerks to the world'

Staff Reporter

Murli Manohar Joshi mourns country's loss of civilisational glory

# Seminar on `Bharatiya Heritage in Engineering and Technology' held
# `Ancient India had every kind of technology and science'

BANGALORE: Former Union Human Resource Development Minister Murli Manohar Joshi regretted that "India has become the account keeper, a nation of clerks to the world, while China is the workshop of the world, a tragic reversal for a country that boasts of the most ancient civilisation, where every aspect of modern, Western science can find its seed."

Inaugurating a national seminar on `Bharatiya Heritage in Engineering and Technology' at the Indian Institute of Science to mark Technology Day here on Thursday, Dr. Joshi said it should be recognised that before the advent of foreign rule, India had a very high share in the world market.

At the beginning of the British Raj, India had a 20 per cent share, but today, after 60 years of Independence, it did not even account for one per cent.

Cites an incident

To demonstrate the civilisational reversals that had reduced India to the status of a developing country, Dr. Joshi narrated an incident during his visit to Brazil from where India was considering importing a new variety of bull. On asking about its origins, he was told that "we have borrowed a strain from the Indian bull."

It was very easy to prove that ancient India had every kind of technology and science in those times. How could Sushrutha describe the existence of blood corpuscles or Charaka describe the "krimis" (microscopic organisms) in blood? Parasara, author of `Vrukshayurveda' in the pre-Buddhist era, had given an account of herbs and plants beneficial to mankind, which was now the basis of pre-medical botany studies.

In technology too, India's contribution was unparalleled: the spinning wheel, which cut the cost of textile production, is still hailed as the first examples of belt-transmission power; the stirrup was of second century BC origin; and the ancient blow-gun (nalika), which shot small arrows or pellets, could well be the forerunner to the airgun invented by the Europeans in the 16th century, he said.

Dr. Joshi, a former professor of physics at the Allahabad University, said India introduced the concept of perpetual motion to European thinking about mechanical power. The concept could be traced back to Bhaskara, and the Arabs took it to Europe, he said.
Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh chief K.S. Sudarshan, who released a souvenir on Technology Day, urged India's scientific community to explore the enormous possibilities of India's ancient technology, which was rooted in spirituality. He gave the example of the former NASA scientist H.S. Satish Chandra, who was working quietly in Bangalore trying to link the wonders of Vedic science with contemporary technology.</b>
Well-known archaeologist S.R. Rao, who has researched on the remains of Dwaraka off the coast of Gujarat, said the ancient city's remains bore evidence of amazing engineering techniques and technology.
Science and Technology Minister Ramachandra Gowda said that in order to re-connect with India's hoary past in science, the Karnataka Government had taken up several programmes.
<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin--><b>BJP bludgeoned, black and blue </b>

BJP bludgeoned, black and blueNew Delhi, May 11: More than the fact that it won merely nine seats in all the five states, what badly scarred the BJP today was the combined impact of Sonia Gandhi’s staggering victory and the Left’s resounding triumph.

Despite the election results being on expected lines, no one in the party was ready for the psychological blow that Sonia dealt them not just in Rae Bareli but in Assam and Pondicherry as well.

Adding to the humiliation was the “face of Hindutva”, Vinay Katiyar, losing his deposit in Rae Bareli.

Compounding the party’s misery was the stark failure of its two leading lights — Arun Jaitley and the late Pramod Mahajan, in charge of elections in Bengal and Assam, respectively — to conjure up any imaginative strategy in the two states.

The party failed to open an account in Bengal and increased its tally by just one seat in Assam despite the tall claims made by Mahajan in the run-up to the polls.

Senior leaders attribute their failure to perform in Bengal to three main factors:

Their voters were “seduced” by Buddhadeb Bhattacharjee’s reforms

The benefit of a “personality clash” between Mamata Banerjee and Bhattacharjee went to the veteran Marxist

Mamata did not allow them to contest any seat where they had hopes of winning.

The fact, however, is that the BJP came up with zilch even in seats that Mamata allowed them to contest. Till yesterday, senior party leaders were hopeful of clinching at least three to four seats — mainly Balurghat, Jagaddal, Habibpur and Shyampukur.

“The Marwaris or the bhadralok who never vote the CPM were talking a different language this time round while the traditional Left supporter, the rural poor especially, was feeling a little alienated,” said a senior BJP leader.

In the end, the “alienation” of the rural poor, something that the BJP was hoping would help them make some headway in the Marxist bastion, came to naught.

The facts were stark enough for the BJP even before Sonia’s landslide victory added to their misery. Their brightest prospects were in Assam where the BJP contested 126 seats and won nine.

The situation in the rest of the states was one disaster after another:

<b>None out of 34 seats it contested in Bengal

None of 234 in Tamil Nadu where it had won four seats in the last polls

None of 29 contested in Pondicherry

None of 139 contested in Kerala.</b>
In Rae Bareli, Katiyar was relegated to the third position by polling 19,657 votes, not enough to save his security deposit. A candidate has to get at least one-sixth of the total polled votes to secure his deposit.

<!--QuoteBegin-->QUOTE<!--QuoteEBegin-->None out of 34 seats it contested in Bengal
None of 234 in Tamil Nadu where it had won four seats in the last polls
None of 29 contested in Pondicherry
None of 139 contested in Kerala.<!--QuoteEnd--><!--QuoteEEnd-->
Where to find partywise vote percentage?
Monday, May 15, 2006

HUM HINDUSTANI: Mourning Pramod Mahajan —J Sri Raman

Mahajan was the main organiser behind the Ayodhya campaign of 1990-92 that created a new space for communal politics in India. He was the chief architect, in his home state of Maharashtra, of the BJP’s alliance with the Shiv Sena of the unspeakable Balasaheb Thackeray. Mahajan was also among the main BJP advocates of an inane ‘second war of independence’ against Sonia Gandhi

On May 3, a leader of the BJP breathed his last. As the media kept a 12-day vigil as he battled for his life, and for two days after that, Pramod Mahajan became an unrecognisably transformed figure. From a second-rung politician in the main opposition party, he became a saint.

The media mourned and deified him not only because he had fallen to a fratricidal bullet; and not only because he was a very reliable and valuable source of off-the-record stories and always-entertaining sound-bytes. The media mourned him as, more than anything else, a faithful representative of a middle class that needed its far-right heroes.

Frequently recalled was the fact that he was one of the first Indian politicians to sport a cell-phone. Fondly remembered was the other significant fact that he had brought computers to his party’s Shining-India election campaign that flopped so spectacularly. Anybody who knew Mahajan noted that he knew just about everybody who mattered — in the big business and among media barons. The media mourned him as a ‘moderniser’ of the BJP.

Nothing can be more nonsensical. Like many another BJP leaders (including twin titans Atal Bihari Vajpayee and Lal Krishna Advani), Pramod Mahajan was also ‘loaned’ to the party by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), patriarch of the parivar (the far-right ‘family’). Mahajan was the main organiser behind the Ayodhya campaign of 1990-92 that created a new space for communal politics in India. He was the chief architect, in his home state of Maharashtra, of the BJP’s alliance with the Shiv Sena of the unspeakable Balasaheb Thackeray. Mahajan was also among the main BJP advocates of an inane ‘second war of independence’ against Sonia Gandhi.

It is of the same Mahajan that some media pundits talk as a bulwark against the BJP’s return to its ‘communal agenda’. They mourn him as a bulwark that has disappeared, despite the known and notorious fact he used all his corporate connections throughout his career to fund and fuel communal politics and campaigns.

In other words, the canonisation of Mahajan has been no different from the sainting of Vajpayee. The only difference is that, in the former prime minister’s case, dubious poetry and periodically pious declarations of un-BJP like sentiments with a semblance of secularism took the place of electronic gadgets et al.
In other words, Mahajan was the ‘modern’ face of the BJP just as Vajpayee was its secular visage — ‘the mask’ as a past parivar ideologue once put it. Little wonder that Vajpayee gave added legitimacy to Mahajan’s role by describing him as the Lakshman, the loyal younger brother to Advani’s Ram.
The assumption of the BJP’s party-political opponents is that ‘masks’ and ‘faces’ conceal or camouflage the obscurantist and outdated ideology of the BJP. The argument of the BJP’s advocates addressed to its middle-class constituency, is that the Mahajans and Vajpayees ensure the BJP’s march towards modernity despite the party’s backward sections. Both the apologists and adversaries forget or feign ignorance of the fact that both the party and the parivar as a whole represent fascism.

The point is that fascism is itself a modern phenomenon. The BJP and parivar would in fact be far less of a threat to India and its people if they represented only forces of backwardness fated to popular rejection sooner or later. The far right elsewhere in the world as well, has stood for national development, often of a faster kind than its opponents. However, because of its ideology and politics of hatred and militarism, the fascist path of development is bound to lead deluded nations and peoples down the course of destruction.<b>

Vajpayee is right when he says that the BJP needs another Lakshman, another Mahajan. It will continue to need modern faces to hide its ideology that envisages mass-murder as a ‘final solution’ to the problems of the nation and its neighbourhood.</b>
Speculation continues about who will replace Mahajan in the party. The BJP leadership is right again to believe that other Mahajans will ‘arise’. Several likely successors, in fact, wait in the wings. Sophist Arun Jaitley, with little trace of saffron in his lifestyle; ex-Army Jaswant Singh, the erstwhile columnist of an English daily; a smart-talking Sushma Swaraj, who looks like no orthodox Indian woman despite her much-hyped outrage at the very idea of ‘Italian’ Sonia as India’s premier, and others — the party can have its pick.</b> For the peace-loving people of the country, however, there is no real choice between Pramod Mahajans and more plebeian, more patently communal leaders of the BJP.

The writer is a journalist based in Chennai, India. A peace activist, he has contributed the main essay to “The Media Bomb,” a study of Indian media responses to India’s nuclear-weapon tests of 1998. He is also the author of a sheaf of poems under the title ‘At Gunpoint’

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