Ever since Gujarat CM Narendra Modi romped home to his third poll victory, the BJP has been confronted by a mass of anecdotal evidence from its activists.
This avalanche of opinion has one clear message: The party's supporters are unequivocally rooting for Modi as the BJP's prime ministerial candidate. The clamour is uniformly for Modi. Only he, it is being felt, can both inspire and win.
It is widely recognized that Modi has left everyone else behind by miles in the popularity sweepstakes. Yet, a formal decision is being held up as some RSS leaders are scared of his 'individualism'.
Going by the opinion polls and anecdotal evidence, it seems that Modi is in a stronger position than Vajpayee was in 1996. He is being catapulted by a force more potent than the combined strength of the BJP and RSS.
The only person who can hope to stop Modi is Modi himself !