Vijay Rupani, who quit as Gujarat chief minister (CM) on Saturday, is the fourth BJP CM to resign from his post in a BJP-ruled state in six months.
In July, then Karnataka CM BS Yediyurappa made news for his resignation, which was put down to resentment brewing against him and his son and growing disquiet in the party’s state unit. In Uttarakhand, Tirath Singh Rawat quit four months after replacing Trivendra Rawat, who was also besieged by fierce opposition from within the party.
Yediyurappa gave a tearful speech in the Vidhan Sabha, talking about being tested constantly in the two years of his fourth term, thanked the party leadership and insisted no one had pressured him to resign. Basavaraj Bommai was sworn-in as his replacement on July 28.
Tirath Rawat in Uttarakhand also faced a controversial 114-day stint in power, with state BJP leaders complaining about public anger at some of his remarks such as those comparing Prime Minister Narendra Modi with Rama and Krishna, judging a woman on her attire, and talking about America which, he said, had “enslaved” India for “200 years”.
Rawat was also the one who insisted that Haridwar’s Kumbh Mela should be “open for all” despite a surge in COVID cases.
In Uttar Pradesh too recently, the BJP’s high-profile chief minister Yogi Adityanath came under criticism from his party for remaining inaccessible to MPs and MLAs, and also for the state government’s poor response to the COVID pandemic. At one time, it seemed that Adityanath would be replaced too, but the BJP sent senior leaders B.L. Santosh and Radha Mohan Singh to control the damage and tweaked the leadership line-up.
Rupani on Saturday told the media: “It is well known the BJP, as a party, keeps changing as per requirements… it is a speciality of our party that every worker delivers to the fullest, and I too will continue to work for the party with the same energy,” he added.