Joining issues with the Bharatiya Janata Party, key Sangh Parivar affiliateªVishwa Hindu Parishadªon Tuesday came out in support of Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh chief K S Sudarshan's suggestion that both Atal Bihari Vajpayee and L K Advani shouldªpave wayªfor aªyounger leadership.
It also accused the former prime minister of "torpedoing" the Hindu movement.
In a no-holds barred media briefing, VHP senior vice-president Acharya Giriraj Kishore said Vajpayee's son-in-law Ranjan Bhattacharya belonged to the "American lobby" and had "direct links with Italy."
However, he did not elaborate.
"The RSS chief had pointed to a principle. Those in power politics, aspiring for public office, should retire after attaining the age of 60," heªsaid.
"Vajpayee and Advani should now guide the party and allow the new generation to take over," he told reporters a day after both RSS and BJP sought to put a lid on the controversy fuelled by Sudarshan's interview to a television channel.
Asked why the VHP too did not rate Vajpayee among the best prime ministers, he said, "He did not do anything. He torpedoed the Hindu movement. He talked about a fight-to-finish with regard to Pakistan but nothing happened. The country's defence minister [George Fernandes] was frisked but he did not do anything. The country needs a brilliant prime minister, not somebody who compromises".
On Sudarshan's charge that Vajpayee and Advani did not do enough on the Ayodhya issue, he said, "both leaders did not perform their due role. Now, they are remembering Ayodhya. Ayodhya should not become a ladder for them".