Vishwa Hindu Parishad elections mark end of Pravin Togadia's era

Sergio Conner
April 16, 2018

In a big setback for Pravin Togadia, former Himachal Pradesh governor V S Kokje was today elected as VHP's new worldwide president for which voting was held for the first time in over five decades.

Togadia was appointed as the worldwide working president of the organisation in December 2011.

Togadia, who has been with the VHP for over three decades and served as its worldwide working president since December 2011, announced quitting the outfit in a press conference after his nominee to the post of global president of the VHP was defeated in voting. Kokje bagged 131 of the votes, defeating Reddy, who could muster only 60. Togadia has held the position since December 2011, when he was nominated by his loyalist Reddy, who took over as president the same month. Togadia's aide Raghav Reddy lost to former Himachal Pradesh governor VS Kokje by a two thirds majority.

File image of newly elected VHP worldwide president VS Kokje.

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After the election, Mr Togadia said they would continue to be the voice of Hindus. I was in it for 32 years.

He announced a programme to go on an indefinite fast in Ahmedabad from April 17 to highlight the problems faced by farmers, workers and women.

Centre for having reneged on its promise of building a Ram temple in Ayodhya.

Togadia has of late been critical of Prime Minister Narendra Modi and the BJP leadership. With the death of former VHP leader Ashok Singhal, mediating between Mr. Togadia and the BJP government led by Mr. Modi was becoming increasingly hard.

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