18-Oct-2005

Party With Differences

This article spins the simmering leadership crisis in the BJP and notes that it may not be such a bad thing for the party after all. An excerpt:
The crux of the matter is that a spell in government changes the outlook and approach of party members and leaders, especially if they had been in the wilderness for long, as in the case of the BJP top brass. But while the Congress had taken over two decades to be reduced to that position, the BJP lost its morale and ethos after just six years in government.

A more crucial question in this context is whether a divergence of opinion in a party is unhealthy per se and its absence should therefore be celebrated.
It digs (a bit deeply) into the history of the Congress and comes up with instances of dissidence - and concludes:
If ... a party struggles to practise internal democracy and a periodical change of leadership and suffers a setback in the process, it is not its end. It can be a new beginning, in fact.
I agree. I came to the same conclusion before reading this article. Still, there is a difference. The instances he quotes were surely not played out so openly and surely not with such bitterness. And this is after all the party with a difference. Iron discipline and all that I mean.

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