Gordhan Zadaphia is back in the BJP. That itself is not big news. He was already a spent force in Gujarat politics and after the retirement of Keshubhai Patel from active politics he could not have survived on his own.
The Gujarat Parivartan Party, which he virtually managed on his own due to Keshubhai’s declining health, had failed to make a splash in the state, more specifically it had failed dent the popularity of Chief Minister Narendra Modi, the purpose for which the party was formed. Joining Modi was the only option left for Zadaphia, founder of the Mahagujarat Janata Party which merged with GPP later.
In 2007, Zadaphia had left the party complaining against the autocratic attitude of Modi. He joined forces with Keshubhai in 2012, expecting to cash in on the anti-Modi sentiment within the BJP and the wider Sangh Parivar. However, the electoral outing in the year was a disaster. The GPP won only two seats. It even failed to make a mark in the Saurashtra region, the stronghold of Leuva Patels, the core support base of Keshubhai.
Zadaphia’s homecoming and GPP’s merger with the BJP mean the end of challenge for Narendra Modi from disgruntled elements within the BJP and the Parivar. It makes his position much stronger before the coming general elections on his home turf. He can aim for all 26 seats from the state without worrying about rebellion from within.
Given his earlier record of being critical of Modi, Zadaphia may not get any big role in the party anytime soon but yes, he gets politically rehabilitated.
Updated Date: Feb 24, 2014 21:36 PM