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BJP to Hold Surveys Across UP Before Finalising CM Face

The BJP is trying to convince Home Minister Rajnath Singh to be the poll campaign committee chief since he is reluctant to be the chief ministerial candidate, according to the sources.

Aatish Shrivastva | CNN-News18

Updated:June 12, 2016, 2:21 PM IST

Allahabad: With an eye on the upcoming Uttar Pradesh Assembly elections, the Bharatiya Janata Party is thrashing out its political strategy at the two-day national executive meeting in Allahabad.

Sources said the party will conduct surveys in every constituency focusing on several factors and then come up with a suitable chief ministerial candidate. Caste equations and the work done by Central government will form the basis for the survey.

The main challenge for the BJP is to take a decision regarding its chief ministerial face and posters of Sultanpur MP Varun Gandhi have only complicated matters. Varun's supporters are proclaiming him to be a possible chief ministerial candidate.

The BJP leadership believes that it still doesn't have a strong face from Uttar Pradesh to take on Samajwadi party chief Mulayam Singh and Bahujan Samaj party chief Mayawati.

The BJP is trying to convince Home Minister Rajnath Singh to be the poll campaign committee chief since he is reluctant to be the chief ministerial candidate.

The national executive meet, which is likely to begin around 3 PM on Sunday, is likely to set the agenda for the assembly elections in the state which are less than a year away.

Meanwhile, leaders have been pouring in to take part in the two-day conclave which will conclude on Monday, followed by a rally to be addressed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Several senior members of the Union Cabinet and chief ministers of all BJP-ruled states will also take part in the national executive meeting.

Posters have come up across the city displaying the header 'Mission 265 Plus' a term coined by BJP chief Amit Shah who has repeatedly exhorted workers to aim at achieving a thumping majority for the party in the 403 MLA-strong UP Assembly.

The party at present has less than 50 MLAs in the house, a massive decline since the 1990s when it used to be the top political group in the state.

BJP has brought several new faces to its national executive, the highlight being some former Congress leaders. They include former Odisha chief minister and tribal leader Giridhar Gamang and saffron party leader KV Singh Deo, also from that state. Deo is a former state party chief.

Himanta Biswa Sarma, who defected from Congress to BJP and played a key role in its big Assam win, and former Uttarakhand chief minister Vijay Bahuguna, a new entrant to the saffron party, have also been inducted into the national executive.

(With additional information from PTI)

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