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With the BJP eyeing regions and votebanks where it has not been able to make any significant inroads or electoral gains, sources told The Indian Express that Prime Minister Narendra Modi asked leaders at the party’s national executive meeting, which concluded on Sunday, to reach out to “deprived and downtrodden sections” in communities other than Hindus.
“He said there are deprived and downtrodden sections in other communities also. He said that we should not be limited to Hindus only, we should work for all these deprived communities,” a BJP leader said, referring to remarks from Modi in discussions over the weekend.
Modi’s direction to the party comes days after the party won the Lok Sabha bypolls in Azamgarh and Rampur, toppling the SP in two key constituencies in UP where Muslim voters play a decisive role.
Sources in the BJP said the remark was a message for the party to reach out to communities, such as Pasmanda Muslims in UP and Bihar. After returning to power in UP two months ago, the BJP had inducted Danish Azad, a leader from the Pasmanda community, in the Yogi Adityanath-led government.
“In the past too, the BJP had made attempts to reach out to the community, and the party has assessed that the community’s votes backed the BJP in the recent by-elections,” said the party leader citing Modi’s remarks.
In 2021, Modi had issued a similar call to the party’s general secretaries, suggesting that they should keep the Christian community on its side in Kerala where the party has failed to make significant poll progress.
The party’s political resolution, meanwhile, was moved by Union Home Minister Amit Shah who said that “India will move forward to become the vishwaguru (world leader) when the politics of appeasement, dynasty and casteism end”.
Later, asked if Modi had given any suggestions during discussions on the resolution, Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma said: “The Prime Minister spoke and gave various comments during the discussion. He gave suggestions on the Northeast to bring development. He also spoke on how BJP workers should take the message of our presidential candidate Droupadi Murmu to the grassroots — the message about her simplicity and humble background, aligned with the story of her struggles, should be brought to people. He gave advice during various stages of the discussion.”
According to party sources, when leaders from Gujarat referred to strategies adopted by the state unit, Modi asked the conclave to adopt this model in which the leadership would focus on one district for a day while covering the entire state.
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