Narendra Modi, riding a sweeping victory in the Gujarat by-elections, today met BJP President Rajnath Singh amid indications that he may be made the head of the party's campaign committee for next Lok Sabha elections at the National Executive meet in Goa this weekend.
BJP's impressive victory wresting the two Lok Sabha and four assembly seats from Congress formed the backdrop for the Singh-Modi meeting.
Modi, who is here to attend the chief ministers' conference on internal security, met Singh and discussed the forthcoming Goa conclave and the issue of formation of the campaign committee.
While there is a clamour among the cadre and vast sections of BJP leaders for making Modi, Gujarat Chief Minister, the head of the committee, senior party leader L K Advani reportedly has some reservations.
Modi also met Advani who congratulated him over the bye-election victory.
The top leadership is said to be mulling over whether two committees- an election management committee for the forthcoming assembly polls in five states and a campaign committee for the Lok Sabha polls- should be formed or a single panel be constituted for both.
With former BJP President Nitin Gadkari- whose name was proposed by Advani for the Assembly elections management committee- conveying to Singh that he is not interested in the job, the party may now constitute only the much-awaited campaign committee for the Lok Sabha polls.
It is not yet clear whether this committee will also handle the assembly polls.
However, some roadblocks still remain for Modi to be annointed the head of the campaign committee. Modi drove to Advani's residence after his meeting with Singh.
Party sources said earlier in the day that Advani had called Modi to congratulate him on the by-poll victory.
"Advani expressed his pleasure and satisfaction at this impressive victory in the two Lok Sabha and four assembly seats. All these were held by Congress earlier," the sources said.
Sources said when Advani phoned Modi to congratulate him on the election victory, the Gujarat Chief Minister offered to meet him since he was in the national capital.
"Modi came over to take Advani's blessings and offer him sweets," the sources said.
All efforts are on to reach a consensus on declaring Modi as the election committee chief. But the opposition to this move is from a section of the party top brass which feels this would be a virtual endorsement of Modi as BJP's Prime Ministerial candidate and this would end their chances.
The Goa conclave is likely to witness more pressure from Modi supporters for declaring him as head of the campaign committee. Singh is said to be working hard to prevent any acrimony and make it a smooth affair by taking all sections along by building a consensus.
Earlier, while emerging from his meeting with Singh, Modi thanked the voters for the Gujarat by-poll win. "The people of Gujarat have given the message to the UPA government that it is time for it to go," he said.
Singh congratulated Modi and the Gujarat BJP unit chief as well as party workers for the good performance in the by-polls.
"There is anger among the people against the UPA government for its failures. This victory shows that BJP will get a thumping win in the Lok Sabha polls," Singh said.