Focusing on Uttar Pradesh to achieve its target of ‘Mission 2017’, the BJP has decided to hold its national executive meet in the “political, intellectual and religious centre” of Allahabad. The meeting, scheduled for mid-June, is expected to give fresh momentum to party activities as the BJP targets backward communities and upper castes as a support base ahead of Assembly elections due next year.
All ministers and senior party leaders have already been directed to “concentrate” on UP in the coming months. Senior ministers are touring 32 districts of the state to mark the second anniversary of the Modi government. Most of the ministers are expected to visit the state during the next eight months.
Party leaders expressed confidence that the BJP would fight the election on the development agenda and win. In an interview to The Indian Express, Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh said, “BJP will form the government, and will have a clear majority in UP”. Asked about BJP chief Amit Shah’s comment that the ruling Samajwadi Party would be the BJP’s main adversary, Singh said: I don’t want to comment on it.
I feel that whoever is in the contest, they will be fighting against the BJP, whether it is the SP or the BSP.” BJP leaders said that the conclave would “lift the momentum of the party’s campaign in Allahabad region, which is heavily populated by OBC communities like Kushwahas (Mauryas), Patels and Kurmis”. Sources said it was the PM’s suggestion to make Allahabad the venue because “it is an intellectual centre” and he wanted to “take the campaign to a new level on solid issues.”