Gearing up for the upcoming state assembly polls, the Bharatiya Janata Party on Wednesday named its organisational spearheads for the elections, putting Union ministers Dharmendra Pradhan, Pralhad Joshi, Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, and Bhupender Yadav in charge of the contest in Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, and Manipur respectively.
The party also drafted in a number of Union ministers and other leaders to assist them in the campaign, with Union ministers Anurag Singh Thakur, Arjun Ram Meghwal, Shobha Karandlaje, and Annapurna Devi Yadav along with Saroj Pandey, Vivek Thakur, and Captain Abhimanyu made co-in charges for the polls in Uttar Pradesh, a statement said.
The focus on the all-important Uttar Pradesh polls was apparent in the announcement made by the BJP as it also appointed organisational in-charges for its six regions.
MP Sanjay Bhatia, Bihar MLA Sanjiv Chaurasia, BJP national secretaries Y Satya Kumar and Arvind Menon, UP leader Sunil Ojha and the party’s co-treasurer Sudhir Gupta will head the western Uttar Pradesh, Braj, Awadh, Gorakhpur, Kashi, and Kanpur regions respectively.
West Bengal MP Locket Chatterjee and party spokesperson R P Singh are co-in charges for the Uttarakhand polls.
Union minister Pratima Bhoumik and Assam government minister Ashok Singhal will be co-in charges for the Manipur polls, the party statement said.
Union ministers Hardeep Singh Puri and Meenakshi Lekhi have been named co-in charges for the Punjab polls along with MP Vinod Chavda.
The BJP is at the receiving end of the farmers’ protests against three farm laws in Punjab, a state which is seen as the most affected by the stir.
The saffron party has been pulling out all stops to emerge as a strong force in Punjab which is set for a multi-cornered contest among the ruling Congress, Aam Aadmi Party, Shiromani Akali Dal-Bahujan Samaj Party alliance, and the BJP.
The party is in power in UP, Uttarakhand, and Manipur and has deployed its well-oiled election machinery to retain power there.
While its main challengers in Uttar Pradesh are Samajwadi Party and the Bahujan Samaj Party with the Congress trying hard to shore up its base, the BJP is in direct contest with the Congress in Uttarakhand and Manipur.
The BJP has not named its election minders for Goa, another state which will go the polls along with these four states early next year.