The BJP on Sunday elevated state secretary Amit Kumar Singh alias Pankaj Singh to the post of state general secretary. He is the son of former UP chief minister Rajnath Singh,who is one of the four leaders leading the partys UP election campaign.
Party sources said it is an attempt to placate Pankaj Singh,the name by which is commonly known,and his father after the party decided to deny Pankaj the ticket for contesting the Assembly election. He was keen on fighting from Varanasi Cantonment,but when the party ruled this out,he made a request for Varanasi North which too was turned down,the sources said.
Following Sundays development,three party secretaries Daya Shankar Singh,Santosh Singh and Ashwini Tyagi resigned from their posts in protest against Pankaj Singhs elevation. General secretary Vindhyavasini Kumar confirmed that Pankaj has been promoted and three state secretaries have resigned.
Sources said Pankaj and his father were unhappy over the refusal of formers candidature when relatives of other leaders had been fielded. For example,party MP Ramakant Yadavs son Arun Yadav had been given the ticket for Jalalpur,the MPs wife Ranjana had been given the ticket for Nizamabad and his nephew Virendra Yadav for Phulpur Pawai.
Similarly,Lucknow MP Lalji Tandons son Ashutosh Tandon Gopal had been named candidate for Lucknow North and the partys national spokesman Ramnath Kovinds son-in-law Raj Kishore Verma had been nominated for Balamau (reserved).
Along with Uma Bharti,state president Surya Pratap Shahi and vice-president Kalraj Mishra,Rajnath singh constitutes the quartet which is supposed to be leading the partys campaign. He led the partys one of the two Jan Swabhiman Yatras which began at Mathura on October 13 and concluded in Ayodhya on November 17 last year,but has since confined himself largely to Uttarakhand. Last week,party president Nitin Gadkari had stated that Rajnath Singh was not interested in UP.
Sources said the party was keen that Rajnath Singh should campaign in UP after the Uttarakhand elections. By elevating his son,it hopes to placate him.