RSS, ruling BJP’s ideological mentor, is all set to launch an anti-NOTA campaign in the run-up to the crucial Lok Sabha Elections, scheduled some time in April or May this year. Latest media reports suggest that the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh is likely to launch a door-to-door campaign urging people not to press NOTA or ‘none of the above’ option on the polling day. Trend analysts say that the need for such a campaign stems from the disastrous results of the Assembly Elections concluded in December last year, in which the ruling BJP lost miserably in the Hindi heartland.
An Indian Express analysis showed that the NOTA vote count was much higher in reserved seats than in the general ones. In fact, in Madhya Pradesh and Rajasthan, the NOTA vote exceeds the difference between the vote shares of the Congress and the BJP, the report said. This also means that the RSS will not merely play in the shadows. It will play on the front foot, coming out in open batting for the BJP’s second coming to the power.
It should be noted that RSS chief Mohan Bhagwat had last year said that NOTA will allow people to elect wrong person. Many swayamsevaks have said that NOTA defeated the BJP in Madhya Pradesh.
Last week, the RSS had organised a four-day brainstorming session for its over 30 parivar organisations, including the BJP and the Vishva Hindu Parishad, in Chennai. The meet chiefly looked at organisational aspects and carry out a 'SWOT' (Strengths, Weaknesses, Opportunities, Threats) analysis to help the individual outfits with their respective "nationalistic goals." The session, though dubbed routine by the RSS, offered a "broad guideline" to reconcile the VHP's "Hindus cannot wait for eternity for Ram temple" line with Prime Minister Narendra Modi's recent assertion on the Ayodhya issue, RSS sources indicated.
Modi had in an interview said any legislative initiative “like an ordinance for Ram temple in Ayodhya” will have to wait till the disposal of the dispute in the Supreme Court.
The meet also took stock of BJP's electoral drubbing in Madhya Pradesh, Rajasthan and Chhattisgarh besides the work of 30-plus outfits belonging to the larger Sangh parivar.