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BJP Names MP Rakesh Singh as its Madhya Pradesh Party President

Party insiders claim that Singh, who is also the party chief Whip in Lok Sabha, enjoys backing of PM Narendra Modi and party chief Amit Shah and said to be close to union minister Narendra Singh Tomar, a former confidant of CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan.

Vivek Trivedi | News18

Updated:April 18, 2018, 3:05 PM IST
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BJP Names MP Rakesh Singh as its Madhya Pradesh Party President
Image for representation.
Bhopal: Ending months of speculation, Bharatiya Janata Party on Wednesday appointed Member of Parliament Rakesh Singh as the new president of its Madhya Pradesh party unit.

Party insiders claim that Singh, who is also the party chief Whip in Lok Sabha, enjoys backing of PM Narendra Modi and party chief Amit Shah and said to be close to union minister Narendra Singh Tomar, a former confidant of CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan.

Though Singh is not known for his close proximity with CM Shivraj, but the latter eventually agreed to his name.

The incumbent MP chief Nandkumar Singh Chauhan has been named as a member to the National Executive.

However, with Assembly polls barely six months away, the road ahead is expected to be an uphill task for the newly appointed president.

Jabalpur, known to be saffron citadel, lacked a prominent face following the demise of ex-assembly speaker Ishwardas Rohani and ouster of former cabinet minister Ajay Vishnoi. The appointment of Jabalpur MP Singh has rectified that imbalance.

The BJP is apparently laying stress on Jabalpur region’s tribal belt ahead of MP Assembly elections. PM Modi will be visiting Mandla, close to Jabalpur, on April 24 on the occasion of Panchayati Raj diwas to woo tribal voters.

Singh brings with him a vast organisational experience.

The party high command was favouring minister Narottam Mishra’s name for the post, but CM Chouhan finally settled for Rakesh Singh’s name.

Sources however claimed that incumbent Chauhan lost favour with the high command with successive losses in by-polls and with his bizarre statements, especially in which he publicly claimed that politicians are bound to help criminals and his remarks claiming Pakistan hand in Kathua gang rape incident.

Singh, who started his political career from Science College in Jabalpur, has been representing Jabalpur Lok Sabha seat since 2004.

‘Gaon Chalo-Ghar Chalo’, a campaign initiated by Singh as district head (rural) in Jabalpur was run by the party nationally.

Talking to News18, Singh claimed that strengthening state government and party organisation was his initial aim after being appointed as the state president.

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| Edited by: Ashutosh Tripathi
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