Will BJP compromise with Gopinath Munde?


2 May 2011
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It took 2 separate meetings before BJP President Nitin Gadkari and Gopinath Munde came face to face at LK Advani's residence to try and resolve the differences. Emerging out of an hour and a half long meeting -- one thing was clear that the BJP would have to do a lot more to assure Gopinath Munde of his position in the party fold.

Talks between Gadkari and sulking senior party leader Gopinath Munde remained inconclusive late last night with both sides sticking to their stand over appointment of their men in key posts in Maharashtra and hold over party politics in the state.

"I have been holding talks with our state incharge M Venkaiah Naidu, Ananth Kumar and general secretary (organisation) Ramlal. Today I met party president Nitin Gadkari, LK Advani and the others. I told them about all my thoughts. The talks were held and are continuing in a positive direction. This is all I have to say," Munde said.

He was talking to reporters after a marathon meeting with senior party leaders including Gadkari and Advani.

A visibly unhappy Munde, BJP's prominent OBC face in Maharashtra, refused to speak further on the issue.

"He has kept his viewpoint in front of the leadership. We have discussed all the issues in a positive atmosphere. I am hopeful there will be a positive solution to all the issues," Naidu said.

Sources said while Gadkari wants to remove Munde's man Pandurang Phundkar and appoint Vinod Thawade in his place as Leader of the Opposition in Maharashtra Vidhan Parishad. Munde is not ready to concede this.

Munde, BJP's deputy leader in Lok Sabha, is unhappy with other appointments as well including that of Vikas Mathkari in place of his candidate Yogesh Gogawale to the post of BJP Pune City chief. Munde also wants a greater hold in the party's affairs in Maharashtra which is not acceptable to Gadkari who also hails from the same state.

While Gadkari had kept away from Delhi yesterday and stayed in Dehradun, a series of meetings were held by senior party leaders separately with him and Munde.

A final meeting at Advani's residence where Gadkari and Munde came face to face for the first time since the crisis erupted in the party a week ago also proved inconclusive.

Sources said the discussions with the two leaders would continue to find an amicable solution at the earliest.
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