Advani, along with former prime minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee and another senior leader Murli Manohar Joshi, has been made a mentor and members of the Margdarshak Mandal, a new body.
Advani's ouster complete
The systematic ouster of Advani in the BJP is complete now. The octogenarian leader, who had led the BJP to reach great heights in the late 1980s and 1990s, is almost on the brink of extinction now. The status of a mentor is nothing extraordinary for as an 86-year-old and seniormost leader in the party, Advani naturally stands a mentor to look upto for the younger generation but one suspects offering him such a position after dropping him from the parliamentary board is an effort to sideline him permanently by the new BJP leadership.
Advani knew this was coming
Advani perhaps knew what was coming in the era of the new leadership in the party and that's why tried his best to stop Narendra Modi, once his political protege, from becoming the party's main face. But the failed attempt and the subsequent rise of Modi in the ranks of the BJP and also his anointment as the party's prime ministerial candidate meant that the days of Advani were virtually over and that he had to remain content with the status of India's 'former future prime minister'.
Advani's journey from Kamandal Politics to Margdarshak Mandal is a memorable one
During his days of fall, even loyalists like Sushma Swaraj and Anantha Kumar could not ignore the pressing reality evolving in the BJP's internal politics and toed the new line. For Advani, who had drawn the ire of the RSS for eulogising Mohammad Ali Jinnah to show his softer side in a bid to project himself as a PM material, it was virtually the beginning of the end.
A mentor's role is nothing more than a consolation for an ambitious politician like Advani
For an ambitious person like Advani, the role of a mentor which he had refused to play when the RSS tried to press it upon him, is nothing more than an insignificant consolation prize. It would reflect poorly on him if he refuses to don the mantle of the mentor now but the fact that his position has been relegated in the party would also haunt him till he stays a member of the BJP.
Advani's Marg: Is it relevant any more in the BJP?
The former deputy prime minister of the country, who was also termed as the Iron Man after Sardar Ballavbhai Patel during his stint as the home minister, has covered a memorable journey from the Mandal to Margdarshak Mandal days. But does Advani has any relevance if his very 'Kamandal' political ideology loses significance, as it is today? What Marg is he going to show to a new leadership which bagged an unprecedented mandate in the April-May election this year? Under the leadership of Modi and Amit Shah, the BJP's progress has been along a new route and moreover, with the RSS's influence in the saffron party unlikely to fade, the acceptability of Advani even as a mentor wouldn't be an easy affair.
Will Advani prefer to quit now?