Vishwa Hindu Parishad To Hold Elections For the First Time In 52 Years

| April 12 , 2018 , 10:56 IST

The Vishwa Hindu Parishad will hold an election for the first time in 52 years media reported on Thursday. Elections will be held for the post of international president of VHP, which is currently occupied by Pravin Togadia.

As per reports, the election will be held in Gurgaon on April 14.

Last year on December 29,  the VHP members gathered in Bhubaneswar in order to elect the president of the Sangha but the plan did not go through as its members were unable to decide between two contenders through consensus. 

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This time the situation would be the same for two contenders facing off; one Raghava Reddy from Hyderabad, and second is former Himachal Pradesh governor and MP high court judge Vishnu Sadashiv Kokje. 

This move would end the longstanding leader Pravin Togadia’s control over VHP  who has emerged as the public face of the organisation over the last several years.

Surendra Jain, joint general secretary of VHP said, “Yes, we are having our next elections for the post of International President on April 14 in Gurgaon. Raghava Reddy and VS Kokje are standing for the posts. Last time there was no consensus, we are meeting again to complete the process."

While talking to media, Togadia expressed shock at Kokje’s sudden appearance on Hindutva turf and said that he will back Reddy in elections. 

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He said, "Reddy, is young, dedicated to Hindutva and was selected by Ashok Singhal. If Kokje gets elected, it is certain I won’t be in the cabinet. It is shocking that a person, who held a constitutional post is standing for the elections of a socio-religious organisation. He retired from government office 20 years ago and did nothing for Hindutva, yet he is standing for the post of International President of VHP."

According to Togadia, the high political pressure on VHP is the reason for the polls. "This is the first time in 52 years that I am seeing race in VHP elections. There is political pressure on VHP to do so," he added.

He also stated that he would continue as working president if Reddy won, otherwise he would resign.

Earlier in Bhuveneshwar Togadia had forced a showdown when some members of RSS pushed for Kokje's candidature. The election was later postponed.