Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his government’s achievements in its first two years will be the highlights of the BJP’s two-day national executive, which begins in Allahabad on Sunday. The national executive would also set the tone for the party’s fierce electoral battle next year to return to power in Uttar Pradesh after 15 years.
Calling it a “Modimay” (full of Modi) event, a senior party leader involved in the preparations for the meet said, “The venue will be full of his (the Prime Minister’s pictures) banners, hoarding and the achievements of his government.” There will be a special exhibition hall displaying achievements of the NDA government.
The decision to highlight Modi and the government’s achievements is significant as the party is still contemplating on whether to declare a chief ministerial candidate in Uttar Pradesh.
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“Unlike Assam, UP is a huge state and we have to fight leaders such as Mulayam Singh Yadav and Mayawati. Also, we need a leader accepted by the state unit. So a decision on the CM candidate should be taken after weighing all aspects,” another party leader said.
The Prime Minister’s rally on Monday is expected to set the tone.
Sources in the BJP said Modi, who has already addressed two rallies in the state in recent past, is likely to address at least one each in all six kshetras (regions), and more than one in key regions. The party has divided UP into six kshetras for the campaign process: Kashi, Kanpur-Bundelkhand, Gorakhpur, Awadh, Braj and Paschim.
With party president Amit Shah projecting Narendra Modi as a “UP-wala” (Modi is an MP from Varanasi) at a rally of booth-level workers of Braj region earlier this week, the BJP has given clear indication that Modi’s image would be a major factor in its campaign.
In his address to the national executive, Shah is expected to reflect on the “upbeat mood” after the party’s victory in Assam and the rise in vote-share in Kerala, West Bengal and Tamil Nadu. “He will project the productive years of the party and the government, and will place the challenges before the party leaders,” the senior leader said.
On agenda of the national executive are discussions on the organisational subjects, forthcoming elections (Punjab, Goa and Manipur, among others), current issues, and future programmes.
The conclave is expected to adopt a political resolution and an economic resolution, and is likely to launch new slogans for the UP elections.
The discussions and the political resolution are expected to refer to the deteriorating law and order and target ruling Samajwadi Party in the state, and on corruption to take the attack to the BSP and the Congress.