With dissent within the Kerala BJP over the appointment of a new chief deepening, the BJP’s central leadership will hold consultations on June 8 in an effort to evolve a consensus.
Senior RSS leader Krishna Gopal and party secretary in-charge of Kerala H Raja will hold discussions with RSS leaders and state BJP leaders who have been deeply divided over the names being considered for the post. Krishna Gopal’s presence is expected to iron out differences.
The RSS state unit was upset with the national leadership’s decision to remove Kummanam Rajasekharan as party chief on the eve of the Chengannur by-election. The meeting is likely to be held in Kochi.
Party sources said the national leadership expects that Krishna Gopal and Raja would be able to evolve a consensus on who would lead the party ahead of 2019 elections. The BJP, which has faced a dip in vote share in the May 28 bypolls in Chengannur compared to the 2016 election, has to get all its allies on board, a leader said.
With the central leadership unhappy with the performance of the state BJP in Kerala’s electoral politics, the new leadership should be able to energise the state party. It also has to strengthen the NDA in the state, the leader added. The party wants the new president to better its ties with Bharath Dharma Jana Sena and enter into an understanding with Nair Service Society. Among the names doing rounds for the post are K Surendran, M T Ramesh and R Balashankar.