The long expected announcement has finally been made. Advani is BJP's choice for Prime Minister. It would have been nice if the 'coronation' had happened at the recent National Executive meet in Bhopal. Funnily, its the fear of the next candidate (NaMo!) hogging the limelight, which has brought this hasty announcement. (Wonder, how confident is BJP of retaining Gujarat.)
Advani's candidature will hopefully give coherence, direction and respectability for BJP's bid to unseat the 'Delhi Sultanate'. When even knee-jerk Pseudo-secularists like Vir Sanghvi praise Advani's brand of Hindutva (versus Modi's), we know Advani has arrived! Guess, the infamous Jinnah speech will now be thrown in the face of any NDA ally who dares question Advani's secularism!
Announcing the PM/CM nominee is always a better strategy. BJP recently showed more decisiveness in announcing Dhumal as Himachal's CM in waiting. The Shantha-Dhumal fracas could have jeopardized BJP's fortunes there. BJP should also go ahead and announce Harsh Vardhan as the captain in the Delhi Assembly Elections.
Coming back to Advani, its funny the Tamasha media pits Modi against Advani. Modi can only be too happy with this development. May 2009 would have been far too early for Modi to get a Ganga-snan of Secularism. Advani would keep the seat warm for his protege (provided he gets it, ofcourse).
The other conspiracy theory on 'Advani vs Rajnath Singh' is just a farce. Rajnath's only qualification when he became the party President was being a perfect lapdog to carryout Sangh directives. Besides he was also the understudy of then Lakshman of the BJP, Pramod Mahajan. Now that Mahajan is no more, there is no stopping the Gujju Trio of Advani, Narendrabhai and Jaitley.
The infamous GenNext war preceding Uma Bharathi's ouster had derailed most second-rung leaders of the party. Arun Jaitley is now happy playing second-fiddle to Modi. Sushma Swaraj has totally withdrawn from intra-party politics. And there are no takers for Venkaiah Naidu. If Modi doesn't get the hot seat from Advani, he'll have only himself to blame.
BJP should also learn from Rajnath's debauchery, the pitfalls of appointing ambitious lackeys as President. Vajpayee, Advani and Joshi had it in them to lead the party on their own merits. BJP had later zoomed in on backroom boys like Kushabau Thakre and Jana Krishnamurthy. Having seen disasters like Laxman, Venkaiah and Rajnath, it would be prudent to have someone like Bal Apte to succeed Rajnath.