New Delhi: Veteran BJP leader LK Advani will not be attending the party’s National Executive meet on Sunday which is the second and the last day of the meet.

Addressing a press conference, BJP spokesperson Prakash Javadekar said that Advani would not be able to attend the BJP’s executive meet due to bad health.

“Advani wanted to attend the meeting, if not on Saturday, then, at least on Sunday, but could not, because doctors advised him to take rest for another few days. Rajnath Singh spoke to Advani personally and asked him not to take the strain to attend the meet," said Javadekar.

READ MORE: Protest outside Advani’s residence in Delhi

However, sources said the party is keen to make the announcement about Modi at the National Executive and the RSS has given its go-ahead to it.    

"Whether Advani is there at the meeting or not, the announcement about Modi is likely," at least two senior party leaders said. Some sources said the announcement could come even as early as on Saturday.
There is a possibility of senior leader Sushma Swaraj, considered close to Advani and some others, raising objections to the announcement about Modi's role in the absence of Advani.

The earlier concern that making such an important announcement in the absence of Advani and several other leaders, most of whom have cited sickness as the reason, would wean away the sanctity of the measure, has now been set aside, the sources said.

Even the RSS is now said to be of the view that the party should go ahead with the announcement without further delay. Modi's role in the next general elections to be held in 2014 has divided BJP - some pushing for him, others close to Advani opposing him.

Apparently in a show of opposition, leaders like Uma Bharti, Jaswant Singh, Yashwant Sinha, Shatrughan Sinha and Yogi Adityananth, considered close to Advani are not attending the meeting.

BJP downplays Advani’s absence

Meanwhile, BJP leaders tried to downplay Advani's absence at the national executive meet. Party general secretary Rajiv Pratap Rudy said he had enquired about Advani's health and he is actually unwell.

Insisting that not much should be read into this issue, he said Advani would have loved to be present at the conclave.

BJP spokesperson Shahnawaz Hussain said Advani is indisposed and hence, he has not been able to attend the meeting.    

National Executive member Nalin Kohli said BJP is different from the Congress and does not have camps. He said BJP is deliberating upon the plans to replace the UPA government in the next elections as people are fed up of the corruption, scams and lack of governance in the Congress-led regime.


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