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Raje sets sights on R’sthan BJP throne

With Rajnath Singh on the exit mode, former Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje is gearing up to throw her hat in the ring once again for election to the post of the leader of opposition in the state.

, ET Bureau|
Dec 17, 2009, 02.34 AM IST
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JAIPUR: With Rajnath Singh on the exit mode, former Rajasthan chief minister Vasundhara Raje is gearing up to throw her hat in the ring once again for election to the post of the leader of opposition in the state. Ms Raje was forced to resign from the post on October 23 after a sustained and unrelenting campaign from BJP’s national president, who had emerged as her chief tormentor. The post has been lying vacant since then.

With Mr Singh getting ready to step down from the BJP president’s post, Raje loyalists see it as an opportunity for their leader to don her old robe. And there is nothing in the party constitution to prevent her from entering the fray again.

Ms Raje’s absence from the scene has added to the woes of the party in Rajasthan, with the organisation lapsing into a deeper mess. State president Arun Chaturvedi is finding it tough to lead the pack. It’s double-trouble for Mr Chaturvedi who has to face stiff resistance from two power centres — one led by Ms Raje and the other led by another former state BJP chief Om Mathur.

The infighting has now come to the streets. The party, which claims to be a cadre-based outfit, has seen a couple of violent protests in Udaipur and Jodhpur during the ongoing organisational elections, which has forced Mr Chaturvedi on the back foot. The dismal performance of recently held local bodies elections has already put a question mark on the organisational capabilities of Mr Chaturvedi.
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