New Delhi : The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) will perhaps be the last party to announce its candidates, possibly towards December end or early January, just weeks before the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections are announced.
Notwithstanding Uttar Pradesh BJP President Keshav Prasad Maurya’s claim in Bareilly on Monday that the party won’t project a CM candidate, sources in the party headquarters said that no such decision has been taken yet and the final word will come only from national party president Amit Shah.
They said the party has decided to finalise candidates for the Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections only in the last week of December and the decision on whether to project a chief minister face or not will also be taken at that time. Selection of the candidates will start after the party ends its 52-day long “Parivartan Yatra” (travel for change) in Lucknow on December 25, with a massive rally to be addressed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
The Yatra that will start from the four corners of the state on November 5, it will pass through all the districts and it would be during this mass contact with the people that the assessment of the prospective candidates will also be carried out side by side to gauge their social background and caste equations, whether they were active on the political issues and how far they are connected with the youths.
As regard to those joining the BJP in the recent months, their loyalty to the party and their equations with the party cadres will be the criteria for the party ticket in the Assembly elections. The winning ability and popularity of the candidates will be the two prime factors for the ticket, the party sources said.
They said that as many as 229 candidates, whose security deposit was forfeited in the last election, will not be considered while most of the 47 winning in the 2012 elections may get the ticket. The aspirants have been clearly told that their merit will count and not the recommendations from the senior party leaders.
While the party has decided to make Prime Minister Modi its poll mascot in the state addressing eight rallies in the next two months, the state leaders participating in the “Parivartan Yatra” have been told to portray him as the main architect of the developmental projects undertaken by the Centre and a decisive leader as seen in the surgical strikes ordered across the Line of Control (LoC).
Home Minister Rajnath Singh and Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar have been lined up, along with Amit Shah, to address all big rallies during the Yatra in an attempt to encash the atmosphere created against Pakistan since the surgical strikes. Other leaders shortlisted to address the rallies include Smriti Irani and Kalraj Mishra.