BJP CMs meet to chalk out poll strategy

BJP CMs meet to chalk out poll strategy

Prime Minister Narendra Modi being greeted on his arrival for a group photo before the start of a day-long meeting of the BJP Chief Ministers' Council in New Delhi on Tuesday. PTI

Signalling its push for 'Hindutva' issues ahead of the Assembly and Lok Sabha polls, the top brass of the BJP on Tuesday decided to take up the issue of infiltration from Bangladesh in a big way as also to take the NDA government's outreach to Dalits, OBCs and farmer communities.

The BJP chief ministers and deputy chief ministers huddled in the capital with Prime Minister Narendra Modi, party chief Amit Shah and senior leaders and Union Ministers Rajnath Singh, Arun Jaitley and Nitin Gadkari to review the political situation and states' performance ahead of the polls.

The considerable focus was there on three poll-bound states, Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh, where the party is ruling and the chief ministers from these states presented the situation, challenges and suggestions to the central leadership on how to tackle the scene.

Both Modi and Shah exuded confidence during their interventions that the BJP will win the Assembly polls in the three states and will emerge with more seats in the Lok Sabha polls, Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh told reporters while providing details about the deliberations. After the earlier chief ministers' conclave held in February, Shah said, the BJP has formed governments in Tripura and Nagaland either on its own or with allies while it also became close to winning Karnataka.

While both Modi and Shah spoke about the government schemes, specially on Swacch Bharat, as well as the NDA government's intervention in the social sector, they also stressed on the exercise in Assam on National Register of Citizens (NRC) and Citizens Amendment Bill, which signalled the BJP's intent to use Hindutva themes during campaign.

Shah said the party's stand on "infiltrators" from Bangladesh was very clear while emphasising that the government is committed on passing the Citizens Amendment Bill that allows minority Hindus as well as Jains, Parsis and Christians in Pakistan, Afghanistan and Bangladesh to return to India and seek citizenship.

The emphasis on infiltrators, which the BJP identify as Muslims, and the minorities in Muslim-dominated neighbouring countries is seen as an attempt by the saffron party to raise the decibel levels ahead of the polls.

The BJP will also echo the government's decision to hike minimum support price for Kharif crops as well as granting Constitutional status for OBC Commission. The party will also harp on the amendments made to offset Supreme Court judgement on the SC/ST Act.

Asked about the strategy for the three state Assembly polls, Singh said the states have different issues and there will be a different strategy for each state.