The BJP will go into the upcoming urban local body polls with a manifesto of promises for “development without corruption”. This will be the first time BJP contests municipal polls in the state with a manifesto. The party unveiled the plan during a meeting between Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, state BJP chief Mahendra Nath Pandey, state ministers and party MLAs Sunday. Sources said the MLAs have been asked to abstain from seeking tickets for their kin.
The MLAs, it is learnt, were asked to not take the Opposition parties lightly, who too have planned to contest the polls on their respective symbols. According to sources, a senior party leader said in the meeting that Opposition will contest the election on full-strength and the ruling party needs to cash in the “favourable” atmosphere. Ministers were asked to coordinate with the organisation and actively take part in preparations for the polls, the sources said. Sources said BJP’s manifesto will include promises related to solid waste management, cleanliness, transparent functioning and development of civic amenities.
A party leader said the manifesto will be a roadmap for development of municipal towns to convince voters that BJP was concerned about the development of civic amenities. The manifesto will be drafted under the supervision of state Urban Development Minister Suresh Khanna, said sources. According to sources, the meeting was called to brief members of their responsibilities. During the meeting held at his official residence, CM Adityanath told MLAs that it was their responsibility to ensure the party’s win, sources said. The CM, it is learnt, said MLAs should go door-to-door in their constituencies and speak about achievements of the Narendra Modi government and the state BJP government.
The CM and the state BJP chief will hold a similar meeting with MPs. Thirty-one Assembly segments won by BJP in the state polls do not fall in any urban local body. MLAs of these seats have been asked to help the party organisation in the nearest urban local body or wherever they are assigned a task by the party, sources said. Noting that BJP won 10 of the 12 mayor seats that went to polls in 2012, when atmosphere was “unfavourable”, the MLAs were told the party must win all the seats this time, sources said.
There are 16 municipal corporations, 198 Nagara Palika Parishads and 439 Nagar Panchayats. Sources said the MLAs were told these elections were a test of their performance. “We have been told that the prestige of MLAs will be at stake because we are working in the field for the past six months as the ruling party’s legislators. It is our responsibility to highlight the work of the state and Central governments,” said an MLA.
Sources said the MLAs were told that the state may announce by the end of this month that it was prepared to hold elections and the polls could be held next month in phases. The party also decided that MLAs and MPs will be in the district level party committees formed to screen candidates for the polls, said sources. Senior leaders have been asked to not seek tickets for family members and relatives, said sources, adding that District level screening committees will have to recommend a panel of three names with a clean image. Those who were denied tickets for the Assembly polls could also seek a chance in municipal polls, said sources. BJP candidates who lost in the Assembly polls were invited to the meeting and asked to seek support for party candidates in their areas.