Advani firm on decision to quit as leader of opposition: BJP

May 17th, 2009 - 2:40 pm ICT by IANS  

Bharatiya Janata Party New Delhi, May 17 (IANS) In the first clear confirmation that its prime ministerial candidate L.K. Advani would step down as leader of opposition in the Lok Sabha, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) said Sunday that he was a man of a “firm mind” and would not relent on his decision.
“I don’t think that we can persuade Advaniji, who is a man with very firm mind,” BJP spokesperson Balbir Punj told reporters a day after the BJP’s electoral defeat. “I don’t think he is going to relent on that,” he added.

“I can understand the reluctance of the party as the party has worked under his leadership for 50 years. It’s very difficult for the ordinary BJP worker (to accept Advani’s decision).”

On Advani’s possible successors in the Lok Sabha, Punj said the BJP was “very rich in leadership in Lok Sabha”. He said that the party will decide a successor by consensus.

Advani had offered to step down at the BJP parliamentary board meeting Saturday after it became clear that the BJP had lost the electoral battle but his colleagues refused to accept it. When he insisted, it was decided that party president Rajnath Singh would speak to him.

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