The unexpected defeat of the BJP-led NDA in the May 2004 parliamentary elections has brought a new challenge before my party. I have acknowledged my own share of responsibility for the setback. In retrospect, I feel that many things could have been done differently. These lapses made the vital difference between victory for the Congress and defeat for the BJP. And numerically, what a narrow difference it really was!
Nevertheless, the BJP’s defeat cannot mask the truth about one of its most enduring achievements – namely, my party’s success in transforming India’s polity from being dominated by a single party to one that is now essentially bipolar.
And, in Outlook, Saba Naqvi Bhaumik says the release of the book on Advani’s past is a gesture towards the future
Clearly, Lal Krishna Advani believes that the time has come to put the many controversies of his life to rest or at the very least give his version of events. As a public relations exercise, his 985-page book, My Country My Life, should reap him dividends. It clears the air on many issues involving him and the BJP. Moreover, the release of the book has been used to reaffirm his position in the party, get the endorsement of the RSS and larger Sangh parivar, and restate his acceptability to existing and potential NDA allies.