THIS ONE-MAN ARMY will destroy the system

Face to Face: KN Govindacharya

Akash Bisht Delhi 

With Narendra Modi’s ascendance as the BJP’s campaign chief, LK Advani and other senior BJP leaders have raised objections to the one-dimensional manner in which he is being catapulted as the party’s prime ministerial candidate. Advani made no secret of his disapproval while others in the party and the RSS are wary of Modi’s authoritarian and arrogant ways, as much as his sharply polarizing personality. Hardnews caught up with the former ideologue of the Sangh Parivar, KN Govindacharya, to understand the implications of Modi’s elevation within the parivar.  

With Narendra Modi’s elevation as the campaign chief and LK Advani’s resignation, the BJP seems to be in disarray. How do you look at the crisis within the BJP?

The resignation letter of LK Advani is an indictment of the situation in the party. In his letter he has cited three basic aspects: each and every leader is pursuing his or her own personal agenda; this is not the party initiated by Deendayal Upadhyaya, Shyama Prasad Mookherjee and Nanaji Deshmukh; and the state of affairs and functioning of the party make him sad and he believes that much rethinking is needed. In a very precise fashion, he has narrated the state of party affairs and where the party stands today. I would like to add that the situation is irreparable because the will-power is lacking in the party. Moreover, there are no initiatives on incorporating any scientific style of functioning and a filtering mechanism. If this filtering mechanism is there then it will obstruct the careerism of the present leadership. 

Could you elaborate on the scientific style of functioning?

The party’s character is that of a party of workers with a mission in which the parameters of evaluation are scientifically formulated, which at present is absent. Therefore, there is no scientific style or clarity on what basis more responsibility is being given to a particular person. Naturally, sycophancy, manipulations and conspiracies will be ruling the roost as far as the style of functioning is concerned. Similarly, there will be no code of conduct and there won’t be any mechanism for checking as to whether the code of conduct has been adhered to or not. To ensure the democratic functioning of the party, nobody should become indispensable and team work should get priority over an individual’s performance. There has to be some parameters and evaluations and based upon that one should climb the ladder in the hierarchy of the party. That will inspire the workers to be motivated by a sense of mission and not by career, profession or some other inferior motivations.

 

The RSS used to believe in collective leadership. How do you see the RSS backing a personality-based politician like Modi? Considering the fact that he single-handedly marginalized the RSS and VHP in Gujarat, isn’t the RSS wary that he might do the same when he takes over the BJP?

The nature of the RSS is not merely to find fault with the current situation, but the dictum is that change when you must and change for the better. Perhaps the RSS may be in a dilemma that if change brings in a worse situation, the remedy adds to the disease and not to the cure. They are in that pensive mood and they are just not able to analyse or find out the ways and means as to how to wriggle out of the situation.

 

How do the RSS and the Swadeshi Jagran Manch reconcile with the fact that Modi is so openly backed by the corporates and that his policies go against the self-reliant ‘swadeshi’ model?

The Swadeshi Jagran Manch will not reconcile. It is independent of any political party, including the BJP; but their strength is very little and they are not able to assert and make themselves more publicly visible. As far as the swadeshi spirit is concerned, the RSS per se is opposed to this development model espoused by Modi. But, at present, they are not able to tackle the problem of image versus reality. They don’t want to topple the applecart and want to sail along and in due course find ways and means to deal with the problem. 

Will the entire BJP leadership back Modi in the 2014 elections? How do you look at some of these leaders queuing outside Advani’s residence after his resignation?

I feel that most BJP leaders are already on that track. Most of those who have been rushing towards Advani may also be insecure. Many of them may be discovering that it would be difficult to reach the top in the next 20 years if the ascendance of Modi is not challenged. So, many such mixed motivations may be there and a few must be alarmed by the situation in which the party’s ideology and idealism will be given a goodbye. This one-man army will destroy the system, the mechanisms and structures, and that type of recasting of the party may be hurting them more. That sentiment and fear of Modi may have forced them to approach Advani. 

 Will Amit Shah taste any success in UP?

Bullying techniques may attract some sycophants but it will alienate a majority of those who have got their inspirations kindled by ideology and idealism. He won’t be able to attract or rope them in. He may be some kind of a Sanjay Gandhi brigade. It will not augur well for the spirit and ideology of the party.   

This story is from the print issue of Hardnews: JULY 2013