Amit Shah says time for party to sensitise its men on gender

The question of whether LK Advani will address the gathering looms large.

By: Express Web Desk Written by Vaidyanathan Iyer , Liz Mathew | Bengaluru | Updated: April 3, 2015 6:27 pm
BJP meeting, amit shah, narendra modi, BJP national executive meeting, lk advani Prime Minister Narendra Modi talking to BJP president Amit Shah during a meeting of BJP’s office bearers ahead of their National Executive meeting in Bangalore (AP photo)

Taking cue from Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s call for transforming the party’s membership into a social movement, BJP chief Amit Shah told the National Executive to adopt four programs – removing the manual scavenging profession, Beti Bachao-Beti Padhao, Swachh Bharat and Namami Gange. While Modi in his address to office bearers on Thursday heaped praises on Shah, the party president has lauded the BJP government’s performance in the last 10 months. Addressing the BJP functionaries, Shah told them that the BJP-led government has changed the political atmosphere from the scams to welfare programs.

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“A new political culture has been evolved. So the party’s focus should remain Dalits, Backward communities and the farmers. The government has succeeded in protecting the interests of the rural poor,” Shah told party leaders as the National Executive began today in Bengaluru.

Amidst reports that a section of party leaders and the RSS are of the view that a “growing disconnect” between the party leadership and the workers, could affect the party’s prospects in the upcoming elections, Shah said: “The BJP will be in power for 10-20 years.”

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The BJP National Executive is expected to discuss its strategy for the crucial election in Bihar, due later this year.

According to party leader and Union Minister Prakash Javadekar, the party chief has urged his partymen to convert their political activities into social works.

Armed with a data bank of 17 crore voters and 9.24 crore members, the BJP will now focus on its weaker states – Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Odisha, Assam, Tripura and West Bengal, Shah said.

“In some states where the BJP did not get enough votes, the response to the membership campaign has been very good. For example, in Kerala, the BJP got 1.4 million votes but the membership has crossed 1.9 million,” Javadekar said briefing reporters on Shah’s inaugural address. “In certain states the membership has been 10 times the votes polled during Lok Sabha polls,” he said.

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Shah has urged the party workers to take the membership to the next level – Maha Sampark Abhiyan during which the party volunteers will reach out to those who have registered their name through missed calls and a training program.

“Training program will focus on converting around 15 lakh members into political activists,” Javadekar said. Shah has already appointed a committee headed by general secretary P Muralidhar Rao for the training program.

The party president has urged his workers to contact 2.3 million manual scavengers across the country, chalk out a rehabilitation program and enable them to benefit from various welfare schemes of the government.

In the backdrop of its leaders coming under fire for their “insensitive” remarks, the BJP President has announced that the party should sensitise the menfolk on gender sensitivity with the slogan Beti Bachao Beti Padhao. The workers have also been asked to focus on PM Modi’s Swachh Bharat campaign as well as Namame Gange scheme.

With the BJP and the Modi government struggling to evolve a consensus on the controversial Land Acquisition bill, Shah has asked the party workers to campaign in favour of the proposed legislation. The BJP leaders have indicated that the government is not likely to make any major changes in the current form of the bill. “There were misgiving about the bill, so the message should be send to farmers that their interests are being taken care of,” Javadekar said.

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