With too many contenders in the party for the top post, BJP on Wednesday hinted it will not be projecting anyone as its chief ministerial candidate in the Uttarakhand polls due early next year. “We have not decided yet and we don’t think it is necessary,” remarked BJP general secretary Kailash Vijayvargiya when asked by reporters whether the party will announce a CM candidate.
Noting that the party had won several state elections without projecting a chief ministerial candidate, he said, “We did not project anyone as CM face in Jharkhand, still we won.
“We did not do anything of the sort in Maharashtra either but we came out with flying colours in both states. We don’t think it is necessary.”
However, he did not rule out the possibility completely, saying the party has not “yet” decided about a chief ministerial candidate.
Political observers here feel unlike in previous assembly polls, the BJP this time is wary of announcing a chief ministerial candidate as there are too many contenders in the party for the top office.
Announcing a name may trigger infighting in the party and jeopardise the party’s prospects in the hill state, they said.
Apart from three party heavyweights and former CMs who are now MPs including Bhuvan Chandra Khanduri, Bhagat Singh Koshiyari and Ramesh Pokhriyal Nishank, there is former Congress chief minister Vijay Bahuguna too who is now in the BJP.
With too many leaders nourishing the ambition of occupying the top office, BJP has chosen to walk the line cautiously and avoid announcing a CM candidate in advance, poll watchers said.
However, going by the party’s track record in Uttarakhand, it has always announced CM candidates ahead of assembly elections.
When asked how the party was going to accomodate the former Congress MLAs who had joined its ranks, Vijayvargiya said they had become dedicated workers of the BJP now and will do whatever the party leadership asks them to do.
“If the party gives them ticket to contest elections they will enter the poll fray, if not, they will continue to serve the party the way they are doing now,” he said.
The BJP general secretary, who concluded his three-day visit to the state today, said he had come here to galvanise party cadres into action right up to the booth level in view of the coming elections.
“The BJP is confident of its victory in 2017 assembly polls in Uttarakhand but a strong organisational structure alone can give stability to a government,”‘ he said.
Asked about Congress’ allegation that he had bought over rebel MLAs to topple a democratically elected government in Uttarakhand, Vijayvargiya said, “It is no use speculating about it.
“CBI will soon make it clear who was guilty of buying MLAs in this state,” he said.
CBI is probing Chief Minister Harish Rawat in the CD case. It is alleged that he had tried to lure MLAs and his conversation was caught on tape.