With an aim to attract youths ahead of the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, the BJP will organise a youth convention — “Yuva Udghosh” — on January 20 in Varanasi, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s constituency. Party president Amit Shah and UP CM Yogi Adityanath will address students at Kashi Vidyapith during the event, which may be attended by Modi, local party leaders said.
The BJP has launched an online registration exercise for people between 17 and 35 years on the website of the local party unit. Those who are presently 17-year-olds will be eligible to vote in the 2019 elections. “The party wants to catch them young,” said a BJP leader.
In the online registration that ends on Tuesday, the party aims to enroll 17,000 people from 1,700 booths — at least 10 from each — in the five Assembly segments of Varanasi Lok Sabha constituency.
The primary objective behind the event is to strengthen the party’s support base among the youth. “It will be an opportunity to renew the youths’ support for Modiji and also to influence first-time voters,” said a senior party leader.
Sources said that the BJP wants to ensure that support from the youth does not wither away under influence of the Opposition and its campaign over joblessness and troubles in the economic sector. The BJP is also concerned about distress in the agrarian sector, which is likely to adversely affect its prospects in rural areas. “Keeping the youth votes intact with the party is very important. There will be more such meetings in different parts of the state,” the leader said.
Ashok Chaurasiya, BJP general secretary for Kashi region and in-charge of the event, said, “Agenda of the event is Mission 2019. There will be at least 10 youths from every booth in that event. This is the first such event in Varanasi on pilot basis and such programmes are likely to be held in other Lok Sabha constituencies too.”
Piyush Vardhan Singh, party in-charge of Ramnagar area, said, “Some youth leaders had caused damage to BJP in Gujarat Assembly polls. The idea behind holding Yuva Udghosh event in Varanasi is to give a message that youths have faith in PM Narendra Modi and the BJP leadership.”
BJP’s UP president Mahendra Nath Pandey and state general secretary (organisation) Sunil Bansal will also address the youths, Singh added.