Editorial: Battle-ready BJP effects organisational rejig

Editorial: Battle-ready BJP effects organisational rejig

FPJ EditorialUpdated: Monday, July 31, 2023, 08:53 PM IST
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Ahead of Assembly elections in five states later this year and the big fight in 2024, the BJP has gone in for a major rejig of its party organisation taking into consideration regional, caste and community aspirations. In keeping with its recent aggressive minority outreach, BJP chief J P Nadda has appointed Tariq Mansoor, former vice chancellor of Aligarh Muslim University, as national vice president to send a positive message to Pasmanda Muslims who have been in the BJP’s radar for some time. While the party has always been viewed as anti-Muslim it has been making efforts to reach out to the backward Pasmandas and the Shias. P Abdullah Kutty, a Muslim from Kerala who was earlier named vice president, has retained the post. The appointment of Anil Antony, son of Congress veteran A K Antony, as national secretary is another move in its bid to reach out to Christians in Kerala where it is hoping to break its long dry spell and bag at least one Lok Sabha seat in 2024. The BJP sees Christians in Kerala as the magic wand to score electoral success and it has been going all out to woo the community with its overtures getting a positive response. The Manipur crisis, however, has put a dent in its aspirations for the southern state as the sustained attacks on churches and the largely Christian Kuki-Zos in the north-eastern state have forced a rethink among Christians in Kerala, who had heretofore remained largely indifferent to attacks on their community in the Hindi heartland and other parts of the country.

To address concerns that the upper castes are being neglected, Saroj Pandey, a Brahmin from Chhattisgarh, which is also going to the polls soon, has been appointed national vice-president. Laxmikant Bajpai from UP has also been named vice president. Radha Mohan Agarwal, former MLA from Gorakhpur, who had to vacate the seat for chief minister Yogi Adityanath, has been made general secretary. He is known to be a rival of the UP chief minister and his appointment is being viewed as a kind of balancing act. The BJP’s revamp is a precursor to further organisational changes. Many decisions will have to be taken ahead of the 2024 general election and this will require an extensive analysis of winnability, caste considerations and regional appeal. Many Central ministers may be denied re-election. The BJP may have perfected the art of winning elections but it is well aware that it has its task cut out ahead of 2024 and it wants to hit the ground running to outwit the Opposition.

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