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Pokhriyal attends BJP meet, Uma too present

The BJP’s two-day national executive meet has been overshadowed by a cold war between LK Advani and Narendra Modi.



New Delhi: Sulking BJP leader Ramesh Pokhriyal on Saturday turned up at the party National Executive meet on its concluding day besides firebrand Hindutva leader Uma Bharti.

Pokhriyal, along with Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi and former Karnataka CM BS Yeddyurappa, was among the three prominent leaders who kept away from the conclave yesterday.

However, the former Uttarakhand chief minister fell in line after the central leadership`s directives and participated in the meet today.

While Pokhriyal and Yeddyurappa are unhappy over their removal due to charges of corruption against their government, Modi has kept away due to a growing rift with senior BJP leader LK Advani over the latter`s proposed yatra.

Modi, who fancies himself as a contender for the post of BJP`s Prime Ministerial candidate, sees Advani`s yatra as an attempt to throw his hat in the ring.

Uma Bharti, who returned to the BJP a few months ago and has been asked to rejuvenate the party in poll-bound Uttar Pradesh, also attended the National Executive Meet.

"There is an opportunity for the party to come to power in 2014 Lok Sabha elections. We will work together to achieve this," Bharti told reporters at the Meet.

She evaded a question on who should be the BJP`s prime ministerial candidate, saying corruption is the main issue.

Bharti`s return to the party was opposed by several top leaders both from the Centre as well as in her home state Madhya Pradesh. They fear their career prospects will be jeopardised by her presence in the BJP.

She told reporters here that her main concern was the BJP`s performance in Uttar Pradesh.

"Corruption and Law and Order are the major issues in UP. We are working towards coming to power in the state," she said.

Bharti refused to comment on IPS officer Sanjiv Bhatt`s arrest by Gujarat police.

Sanjay Joshi, former General Secretary (Organisation) of the BJP and a known Modi detractor, was also present today. He had attended a session last evening too.

Modi is said to be unhappy with Joshi`s re-induction and this is also said to be a reason for the Chief Minister keeping away from the National Executive Meet.

The two-day event will conclude today. A resolution on the current political situation in the country has been passed at the BJP meeting.

Advani will give the valedictory Address, in which he will speak on the road ahead for the BJP.

PTI

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