The Tribune Analysis: Why is Kejriwal using ‘75-year rule’ and Adityanath to corner BJP and PM Narendra Modi : The Tribune India

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The Tribune Analysis: Why is Kejriwal using ‘75-year rule’ and Adityanath to corner BJP and PM Narendra Modi

With PM Modi approaching the age of 75, speculation is rife about his ‘successor’; several opposition leaders reminding voters about BJP's internal ‘no ticket above 75 rule’

The Tribune Analysis: Why is Kejriwal using ‘75-year rule’ and Adityanath to corner BJP and PM Narendra Modi

PM Narendra Modi and Yogi Adityanath at an election rally in UP. PTI



Tribune Web Desk

Vibha Sharma

Chandigarh May 26

Of late, opposition leaders, especially AAP supremo Arvind Kejriwal, are being seen trying to corner the ruling BJP and Prime Minister Narendra Modi through Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and juxtaposing “BJP’s 75-year rule” to allege a “succession war” in the saffron party.

There is no official line on this but after PM Modi and his closest aide Amit Shah started dominating the national and saffron politics, the “75-year cut-off” was applied to sideline veteran leaders like LK Advani and Murli Manohar Joshi.

What is Kejriwal saying      

Taking the cue from the political buzz in Uttar Pradesh, Kejriwal, in many of his recent interviews, has been warning Adityanath of PM Modi and Shah’s “plan” to oust him from his post.

 “Yogi ji came to Delhi yesterday and abused me. Yogi ji, your enemies are sitting in your own party, why abuse me? Modi and Shah have made the plan to oust you from UP, deal with that,” he was quoted as saying.

 Kejriwal also alleged that Shah would be the next PM after PM Modi retires after turning 75 in 2025.

 “If their government is formed, they will first dispose of Yogi Adityanath and then make Amit Shah the prime minister. PM Modi is asking for votes for Amit Shah. Will Amit Shah fulfil Modi’s guarantee?” Kejriwal said. 

BJP's retaliation

Reacting to Kejriwal’s allegations, Shah said PM Modi will “lead the country till 2029” and that there was “no confusion” in the party regarding this. 

“Modi ji will remain the Prime Minister till 2029 and even after 2029, Modi ji will lead our party,” he said.

“Modi ji is our leader and will continue to lead us in future too,” party president JP Nadda added.

Modi also said at one of the rallies that “I don't have any successor, the people of this country are my successors”.

Political analyst Prashant Kishor says that as long as Narendra Modi is there, he will remain in politics and will retire from politics only when he wants to. 

“In the current BJP set-up, no one can take decisions on his behalf, there is no one who can tell PM Modi to leave politics or the post of PM, that will be entirely his decision.  

“Like there is no one in Congress who can ask Sonia Gandhi to retire, likewise no one in BJP can say anything to Narendra Modi in this matter,” Kishor said in one of the many interviews he has been giving. 

Why the speculation then

However, according to Kejriwal, Modi, who will turn 75 in 2025, has appointed Shah as his successor. 

“The retirement age in the BJP is said to be 75 due to which veterans like LK Advani were sidelined,” he claimed. 

Political observers say the speculation regarding succession started during the BJP’s ticket distribution for 2024 election when several sitting MPs were dropped and new faces, “apparently conducive to a particular leader” were brought in.

However, the reason for opposition leaders using this argument seems to be more related to the ongoing elections than anything else.

“It seems a message is being sent to voters, especially in key states like UP and Bihar that their vote is not for PM Modi as the BJP has been claiming but for his successor. Also, given the popularity of Adityanath, the opposition also seems to be trying to fish in troubled waters. But the bottom line remains that no one can tell PM Modi when he should step down -- neither Shah nor Adityanath,” says an analyst.   

Is there a 75-year rule in BJP

Opposition leaders, including Kejriwal, are trying to instil the idea that if elected for the third term. PM Modi would retire upon turning 75. 

Gujarat Chief Minister Anandiben Patel had resigned from the post in 2016 following the “unwritten 75-year age bar” and so did former Lok Sabha speaker Sumitra Mahajan. 

Not just PM Modi, Defence Minister Rajnath Singh will turn 75 during their term in office if voted to power. 

The fact is very few leaders in their early and mid-70s have been nominated for Assembly and Lok Sabha elections, though there have been exceptions like Mathura MP Hema Malini who was repeated despite attaining the age of 75 in October last year.

Senior leaders, including Shah, say there is “no such provision in BJP's constitution” and that INDIA alliance “cannot win elections by spreading such lies”. 

Modi will remain the PM till the time he wants to, say observers.           

“It is like this, you show me the man and I’ll show you the rule. The fact is rules change depending upon how powerful or influential the person likely to be affected by the rules is,” they add.

 

About The Author

The Tribune Web Desk brings you the latest news, analysis and insights from the region, India and around the world. Follow the Tribune Wed Desk for not just breaking news stories but wide-ranging coverage of events.

#Arvind Kejriwal #BJP #Narendra Modi #Uttar Pradesh #Yogi Adityanath


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