AMID speculations that senior BJP leader Kalyan Singh will be projected as a chief ministerial candidate of the party in Uttar Pradesh polls slated next year, the Rajasthan Governor said he was not keen on becoming the party’s face for the post and would request party leadership to chose someone else for it.
Scores of BJP leaders and party workers had gathered at the house of the former state chief minister on his 84th birthday and requested him to take charge of the UP BJP unit in the Assembly polls. Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP veteran L K Advani and Samajwadi Party president Mulayam Singh Yadav wished Singh over the phone on the occasion.
Asked about the speculation of being BJP’s face for UP Assembly polls, Singh said, “I have no such wish, but I have always followed the directive of the party. Everybody knows that I was reluctant to get appointed as Governor. But, as party decided and asked me, I am executing the responsibility now.”
About the possibilities of the BJP coming to power in 2017, Singh denied to comment. “I have the reply but I will not speak because that will be a political comment. I am on a constitutional post and try to avoid commenting on day-to-day politics,” he said.
Earlier, several hoardings and flex boards were erected outside Singh’s residence by party leaders seeking tickets for next year’s polls. The hoardings showed photographs of Singh and his son and Etah MP Rajveer Singh with Ram temple in the background and contained names of Assembly segments of each ticket-seeker. Slogans of “Jai Shree Ram” were also chanted by Singh’s well-wishers.
Gorakhpur MP Yogi Adityanath, Unnao MP Sakshi Maharaj, Aligarh MP Satish Gautam, Faizabad MP Lallu Singh, BJP state president Laxmikant Bajpai, former state presidents Om Prakash Singh, Vinay Katiyar, Surya Pratap Shahi, Lucknow mayor and party national vice-president Dinesh Sharma also met Singh to wish him.