BJP yet to pull up its socks despite assembly poll soon

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Old 17-Jan-2011
BJP yet to pull up its socks despite assembly poll soon

Chandigarh January 17:

Despite the Assembly election drawing closer, Punjab BJP is still inactive and fighting hard, with the help of its ally Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD). BJP leaders seem to be uninterested to participate in the religious rallies where other parties are trying to locate voters as much as they can.

On the historical ground of Sri Muktsar Sahib in Maghi mela, none of the BJP senior leaders assembled with the SAD to register their participation on Friday. The occasion was significant for the political parties as it was subjected to seal their vote bank. "This is not the BJP's trend," said the BJP Industry Minister of the State, Manoranjan Kalia when contacted to comment. He said BJP has a separate identity and they do not want to be the part of chaos therefore they avoid doing such rallies in the State. Sources said that State BJP's splits in several factions is forcing them to avoid such rallies.

Sources of the State also revealed that since leadership in the State BJP is not very affective perhaps results of the next Assembly electioncould also damage the BJP status in Punjab. Meanwhile, State president Ashwani Sharma ruled out any such possibility. He said the BJP is a national party and supporter of Indian nationalism. How could it be bifurcate itself from assembling at such a huge occasions where religious people comes to participate and like to hear their political leaders?

Speaking about Manoranjan Kalia's statement, Sharma said this could be his personal views but BJP cannot separate itself as we have alliance with the SAD, which is the major Sikh party throughout the State. "These are the religious activities which parties like the Congress and SAD do since long. BJP would not left behind and we would participate in every such rally," said Sharma. He added that in the Muktsar rally, our two general secretaries Manjeet Singh Rai and Rajesh Bagga were present and they gave the speeches too during the event.

The year 2010 was not very smooth for the BJP. The resignation of the State in-charge Yashwant Sinha and that of Batala MLA Jagdish Sawhney was the major issue in the party forum. Besides this, controversy on the presidentship of Ashwani Sharma also rocked the party. The BJP leaders of Punjab wasted most of the time in sorting out personal scores with one another than coming together as a well-knit unit to expand the support base and give new fillip to development Health and Family Welfare Minister Lakshmi Kanta Chawla's stand on various issues from the house to party office was invited criticism from various party quarters. Corruption charges against her by Jagdish Sawhney were a serious issue, which dented the party's image.

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