Learning from Delhi, BJP to keep Bihar unit in loop for poll




New Delhi: Taking lessons from its humiliating defeat in Delhi assembly elections, the BJP leadership has decided to involve its state unit in every major decision – from selecting candidates to whether to announce a chief ministerial candidate – in the upcoming Bihar polls.

“From seat sharing to ticket distribution, the decision will be taken only after consultation with state unit,” said a top BJP official, who did not want to be identified.

The state unit will have also a say in whether the party should announce its chief ministerial candidate or bank on Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s popularity, he added.

The leader, who is said to be a “master strategist” of the party, however said that on the issue of chief ministerial candidate, the parliamentary board will have the final say.

Former IPS officer Kiran Bedi was declared the party’s chief ministerial candidate in Delhi at the very last moment, that too without taking state leaders into confidence, contributing to the party’s crippling defeat.

The Delhi election was the first major setback for BJP president Amit Shah, with all his moves including fielding Bedi as chief ministerial candidate failed to click with the natiuonal capital’s voters.

Shah, who will be in Patna on June 21 to participate in International Yoga Day celebrations, will also then hold close door meetings with crucial state leaders and will chalk out the party strategy to take up the Janata Dal-United-Rashtriya Janata Dal-Congress combine.

Meanwhile, the BJP has set a target of winning 185 seats in the state’s 243-member assembly.

“The alliance of JD-U-RJD-Congress is a negative one as it has been formulated with a fear of BJP and Narendra Modi. This itself proves that BJP is in strong position there. They all have compromised with their principles and people of Bihar are not going to accept them,” the BJP leader contended.

He further added that Nitish Kumar and Lalu Prasad had been staunch followers of socialist stalwarts Jai Prakash Narayan and Ram Manohar Lohia, who were strongly opposed to the Congress, but now to stop BJP, they have joined hands with Congress. 

“So why will the supporters of JP and Lohia support them?” he asked.