New Delhi: He's 85, ill, and he retired from politics almost six years ago.
And yet, it's Atal Behari Vajpayee who's starring in the BJP's campaign for the elections in Maharashtra, Arunachal Pradesh, and Haryana. Fifty of Vajpayee's speeches will play at rallies on CDs and DVDs.
"He is our tallest living leader. If the party can benefit from his virtual presence, we should use him," says Prakash Javadekar, BJP Spokesman.
The party fought the general elections in May projecting L K Advani as Prime Minister. The giant defeat was attributed by many within the BJP to Vajpayee's absence, who scarcely was mentioned during the campaign.
So this time, Vajpayee will be everywhere you look. Like in Haryana, where hundreds of huge posters of him are being printed.
The BJP and its parent body, the RSS, have been promising younger leadership when L K Advani eventually steps down. For this election, though, it's an 85-year-old on whom the party is counting on.