Rajnath skips Hindutva issues; calls for wresting power at Centre

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New Delhi, Jan 27 (UNI) Obviously with an eye on the 2009 general elections as also to ensure L K Advani's wider acceptability among the NDA constituents, the BJP today steered clear of ''contentious Hindutva issues'' and asked its rank and file to gear themselves up to bring the party back to power at the Centre.

The day-long National Executive meeting at Parliament Annexe here, finalised the draft resolutions -- agriculture and political-- which would be put up for consideration of the two-day National Council, beginning tomorrow. The Council will pass the resolution on agriculture tomorrow while the political resolution will come up on the concluding day.

The Executive, which began with the Presidential address by BJP President Rajnath Singh took stock of the political situation and preparations for coming polls in Karnataka, Meghalaya, Nagaland, Tripura, BJP spokesman Prakash Javadekar said.

The Executive also reviewed the poll preparedness in the states, especially the progress in forming the booth level committees.

The Council will approve the Bhopal Executive's decision to provide 33 per cent reservation to women in all decision making bodies of the party as it was the competent body to amend the party Constitution.

Inaugurating the Executive, the BJP President hit out at the ''failures'' of the UPA government riddled with ''internal contradictions'', pursuing the anti-people, anti-farmer and anti-labour policies at the cost of ''endangering the unity and security of the country''.

He, however, made no mention of contentious issues like Hindutva, Ram Janmabhoomi and abrogation of Article 370 of the Constitution and Ayodhya, which had propelled the BJP to the centre-stage of national politics since early 90s.

Mr Singh showered praises on Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi for helping the party to retain power in the state for the fourth successive term, and taking it on the development path.

The party President asked the partymen to endeavour not only to retain power in the states where they are in power, but also widen its support base in newer areas. ''The immediate task before the party will be to win Karnataka. The party will oppose strongly any move to delay elections and to cheat the party one more time,'' he added.

The Executive cautioned the Centre against any move to defer or delay elections in the state and said it should clarify whether the polls would be held in accordance with old or new delimitation of Assembly Constituencies.

The UPA government, Mr Singh said, was a congregation of ''desperate warring groups'' who were fighting bitterly in the states but had united to fight against the BJP. ''Such a force will not be acceptable to the people,'' he added.

He said: ''The UPA government has failed in all fronts and its cadre should highlight its weaknesses and compare the strong administration provided by the NDA government under the Prime Ministership of Mr Atal Bihari Vajpayee. Mr Vajpayee could not make it to the Executive because of health reasons.

Mr Advani, who was to address the Executive in the afternoon, however, reserved his remarks for the National Council's guidance address (margadarshan) on the concluding day.

The two-day National Council will have the theme of 'Vijay Sankalp' with more than 3000 delegates from across the country participating in the open deliberations. All the BJP Chief Ministers, Deputy Chief Ministers will be apprising the Council about the progress achieved by their respective states, political scenario and the status of poll preparedness.

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