Mr Advani is in a pitiable plight. On 6 December, he was at Ayodhya to save the vandals from the fury of the security forces. He had asked for every access to the disputed site to be barricaded for the purpose. That was his way of demonstrating that he was for preventing bloodshed.
The print media put out plenty of news about him that time. One detail was that he was in tears because it was alleged that he was grieving over his inability to persuade the vandals against going through their task of demolition of the Babri masjid.
Those who know would say that the tears could not have been for that. On the contrary, they should have been the result of his realisation that, by provoking the incident, he had ruined all chances for getting the Ram temple built as desired by the VHP. Lucky, he escaped lynching for this alone.
His is a split personality. The split is dictated by expediency. When he was with the VHP-RSS, Bairang Dal cadres, he would be saying since the Ayodhya mosque had been demolished, they could move to Mathura and Banaras. But in Parliament, he would affirm that the two sites were never on his agenda.
He was eager to endow on his party, the BJP, the image of a national party, instead of letting it be called a coterie or caucus of ineffective politicians. His party rode to power via the Hindutva card, but as a national party, he had to pretend that he was for the Constitution.
His stooge, Mr Kalyan Singh. wanted to become a martyr by provoking the Centre to dismiss him before the demolition. That way, the latter thought that he could romp home to a poll victory. The Centre did not oblige. With the dismissal following the demolition and not preceding it, he became notorious for his affidavit falsehoods.
The masses all over India exhibited their revulsion over the lies and the demolition. Outside the Hindutva groups, there was none who would applaud the BJP or its accomplices. Thus everything that Mr Advani did recoiled on him only. The BJP got sidelined by all this fundamentalist prank which the people could not suffer. It became very evident that the credibility of the party and its credentials as a group of law-abiding citizens got eroded in the process.
It is amusing therefore to find Mr Advani seeking solace in the unrealisable hope that Mr Narasimha Rao would not last, the government would fall, the Congress would be driven into political wilderness and the BJP would begin to rule India and give its people a Hindutva government.
It is a pity that such a false hope is allowed to gain some ground because, on the surface of it, there has been some dissidence in Congress ranks, thanks to Mr Arjun Singh. If the latter has any love for his country or his party, he should bury the hatchet and expedite instead the transit of the BJP to political wilderness.
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