Uma returns to BJP fold

Uma returns to BJP fold

Uma returns to BJP fold

Back to square one: Uma Bharti shares a light moment with Bharatiya Janata Party president Nitin Gadkari in New Delhi on Tuesday. PTI

Uma Bharti has been given charge to look after party affairs in Uttar Pradesh which was once its stronghold and will go to Assembly polls early next year.

Announcing the re-induction of th 52-year-old leader at a press conference, BJP president Nitin Gadkari said: “I discussed the issue with all leaders and Parliamentary party members and so I am announcing it now. With Uma Bharti, we will get power in Uttar Pradesh politics. I welcome her on behalf of the party.”

“Uttar Pradesh will be the main field for her work. She will manage the party propaganda in the state from Lucknow. With our faith on Lord Ram, we want Ram Rajya in the country. Uma Bharti will cooperate in this,” Gadkari added.

Thanking Gadkari for readmitting her into the party, Uma Bharti said there is no other way to serve the nation than being loyal to the BJP ideology and reiterated her commitment to build Ram Temple in Ayodhya and bring back the party to power in Uttar Pradesh.

“In the last six or five years, I have learned that if I want to contribute to the nation, I have to be faithful to the ideology and there is no other way than the BJP. So I want to forget the last five years,” Bharti said.

Uma Bharti’s homecoming, six years after being expelled from the party, has come at a time when the BJP, which has been marginalised in Uttar Pradesh, is looking for a vote catcher to lead it in the 2012 Assembly elections in the state.

Uma Bharti has been a votary of Hindutva giving a known face to the BJP. The party also wants to fill the leadership void created after Kalyan Singh left the party. Significantly, Uma Bharti is also from Lodh caste — same as that of Singh — which forms substantial population in parts of western Uttar Pradesh.

Notably, in UP, a state that was once its bastion, the BJP finished fourth in the 2009 Lok Sabha election in the state.