BHARATIYA JANATA PARTY
Meeting of the National Executive To Mark the Party's Rajat Jayanti
Salient points in the concluding address by Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee
In his message to the Bharatiya Janata Party on the eve of its 25th anniversary, former Prime Minister and Founder-President of the Party Shri Atal Bihari Vajpayee exhorted partymen to always put the Nation above the Party. He also urged them never to lose sight of the main goal of the party -- to make India stronger and bring about a progressive change in society -- in the face of the highs and lows of electoral politics.
"We should neither get despondent in defeat not become over-confident in victory. We should remain steadfast in the path we have chosen," he said, in his concluding address to members of the National Executive, which met in New Delhi today. Tomorrow he will also address the special session of the National Council, which marks the Rajat Jayanti of the BJP.
Surveying the present national situation, Shri Vajpayee expressed his profound concern over the fact that "the main threats to our nation today are not external but internal." In this context, he specifically mentioned the problem of naxalite extremism and stated, "The danger of naxalism will grow in the years to come. It is spreading its influence to newer areas in the country."
Shri Vajpayee expressed disappointment that the UPA government "does not have sufficient clarity about the threat of naxalism and is not dealing with it effectively." He said that, in the years to come, the importance of those political parties that show the determination to fight the various internal threats to the unity and security of the nation will grow in Indian politics.
The former Prime Minister repeatedly emphasized that the leaders of the BJP, and earlier of the Jana Sangh, never let their love for the Party colour their judgment about what was required for the greater good of the nation. He mentioned how the Jana Sangh decided to merge its separate identity into the Janata Party "in order to make our countrymen's collective struggle in defence of democracy successful."
He referred to the subsequent "painful episode" when some colleagues in the Janata Party raised the issue of "dual membership" and forced the exit of Shri Vajpayee, Shri Advani and other members of the erstwhile Jana Sangh, from the party. "We remained undaunted then, and also later in 1984 when our party's tally in the Lok Sabha got reduced to only two members. We have triumphed over all these crises. So, overcoming the setback in last year's Lok Sabha elections was not difficult for us."
Shri Vajpayee voiced his satisfaction that the BJP was celebrating its silver jubilee in an upbeat mood and expressed confidence that the party would cross many "proud milestones" in the future.