RSS sources tell mid-day that the BJP chief has deputed a central team in the state to give him a list of candidates; the team’s presence is a secret and not known even to top-level state leaders
The ‘Shah’ of BJP works in mysterious ways. Highly placed sources in the RSS and the BJP have told mid-day that, unbeknownst to even the top-level state leaders, party president Amit Shah has deputed a central team in Maharashtra to sniff out candidates from each constituency for the upcoming assembly polls and report directly to him.
As the Uttar Pradesh in-charge, Amit Shah had turned around the party’s fortunes in the state and delivered 73 out of 80 seats. File pic
The team comprises people who are Shah’s close confidants and their objective, besides serving as his eyes and ears in the state, is three-fold: to find out the BJP’s winning ability, the best candidates, and the state of the party’s organisational structure in each assembly constituency. Shah will then compare this list of candidates with the ones sent by the district and state units, before settling on a final one.
A leader from the RSS said, “Everyone was saying Shah would be monitoring the Maharashtra elections closely and they assumed that was not the case when they didn’t see him visiting the state often. The truth, though, is that he has his eyes and ears here in the form of a central team, which will soon finish the work assigned to it and leave for Delhi with a report.”
The team has reportedly already finished its work in Mumbai and is in Pune currently. “The secret observers are preparing a list of probable candidates from every constituency, who they think have worked for the party, are respected, and can win elections.
This means that hardworking leaders, who have not been able to shine because they don’t have financial clout or are not shrewd enough, may be given tickets instead of leaders who think their tickets are assured because of their connections or money power,” said a BJP leader.
When mid-day spoke to a few other BJP leaders, they said they were not aware of any such team being in the state, but said, given Shah’s unpredictability, they wouldn’t be surprised if there was.
“Given how he turned things around in UP, I wouldn’t be surprised if he is taking an unconventional route to try and win the Maharashtra elections and add another feather to his, and the party’s cap,” said a leader.
The day Amit Shah officially took over as the BJP president and was lauded by PM Modi as the Man of the Match of the 2014 Lok Sabha polls