LUCKNOW: BJP working president J P Nadda Friday thanked party workers for their hard work, saying it had created an atmosphere in its favour in the recent Lok Sabha elections which was converted into votes.
He was addressing party workers at the BJP headquarters after arriving in the state capital Friday evening.
Nadda is on a two-day visit to Uttar Pradesh during which a cabinet rejig and assembly bypolls are apparently high on his agenda.
"Through hard work, workers created an atmosphere which was in the party's favour and converted it into votes leading to a historic victory," said Nadda, who played a pivotal role in the polls as the party's Uttar Pradesh unit in-charge.
He said that an opportunistic and casteist alliance had come up in the state ahead of the elections but the party led by its chief Amit Shah worked to connect with people belonging to all sections of society.
"We succeeded in putting the last nail in the coffin of those indulging in casteist and dynastic politics," he said.
Nadda said the leadership of Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath and the popularity of Prime Minister Narendra Modi forced people to extend their support to the party.
He promised to work towards making the party stronger and exhorted BJP workers to actively take part in the membership drive beginning Saturday. The effort should be to increase the membership from 11 crores to 20 crores, he said.
Welcoming the new working president, Adityanath said it was a matter of pride that a common worker could rise to the position of BJP's working president.
"The BJP is not a party of a family, a caste or a sect but it is actually the party of Bharat ki janta," he said.
The chief minister recalled Nadda's contribution as health minister towards improving the health services in Uttar Pradesh.
Earlier, when Nadda ccame out of the Chaudhary Charan Singh International Airport on his arrival here, he was greeted with loud cheers and the beating of drums.
Adityanath, his two deputies Keshav Prasad Maurya and Dinesh Sharma, other state ministers and party leaders were present at the airport to receive Nadda with garlands and bouquets.
Party workers also lined parts of the route to the BJP's state headquarters, showering flowers at his vehicle at places.
BJP flags fluttered at many places along the 15-km route from the airport to the party office, and also at some of the city's major roads.
Arches in saffron colour were erected to welcome Nadda, who was appointed BJP's working president on June 17 after party chief Amit Shah became Union home minister.
Party spokesperson Rakesh Tripathi had said Thursday that Nadda would meet party leaders and discuss organisational matters including a membership drive.
The party leaders are expected to discuss the upcoming bye-elections to 12 assembly seats.
Eleven of them fell vacant after the MLAs found berths in the Lok Sabha following the recent parliamentary elections.
Other issues on Nadda's agenda include expansion of Adityanath cabinet to fill vacancies created after three ministers were elected to the Lok Sabha and the parting of ways with alliance partner Suheldev Bharatiya Samaj Party, whose president Om Prakash Rajbhar was also a minister.
With UP BJP chief Mahendra Nath Pandey being inducted into the Union cabinet, Nadda is also likely to discuss finding a replacement.
On the second day of his UP visit, Nadda will join Narendra Modi in Varanasi Saturday when the prime minister kicks off a BJP membership drive.