NEW DELHI: Seeking to reclaim his seemingly dented midas touch after the Gujarat verdict, the BJP chief Amit Shah is learnt to have taken lead role for upcoming Karnataka elections, while making it clear within the party that former chief minister B S Yeddyurappa would contest Assembly elections to ensure no scope for factionalism.
The BJP chief has also sought not to go overboard ahead of the Karnataka polls by setting too ambitious target as had been the case with Gujarat. “The BJP will be contesting the Karnataka Assembly elections with Mission 150. The BJP had set the similar mission for Gujarat, but there’s a difference. In Gujarat, the BJP aimed to win 150 seats out of 182, while it’s same target out of 224 seats. We’re realistic in Karnataka without suggesting overconfidence,” said a senior BJP functionary.
The BJP chief has already held a meeting at his residence with senior party leaders from Karnataka wherein he’s learnt to have delivered the message that there shouldn’t be any hints of factionalism or any one working at cross purposes. “Yeddyurappa is BJP’s chief ministerial candidate. He’s a Lok Sabha MP. But he’ll contest the Assembly elections to shut doors to make it clear that the party will be contesting the polls under his leadership. The party is taking extra care to fill gaps in poll preparations in the state by presenting a firm united outfit,” added the BJP functionary. Shah is learnt to have also ironed out differences in the Himachal Pradesh unit to present a united outfit ahead of the polls which the saffron outfit won comfortably.
The BJP is also learnt to have assigned specific roles to senior state and Central party leaders hailing from Karnataka. “On the level of micro-management, the caste leaders have to consolidate their support bases, besides making inroads in Congress’ constituencies. And, on the macro level the electioneering has to be localised on state specific issues with aims to corner the Congress government in the state,” said the BJP functionary, while adding that law and order issue, lack of development, corruption are a few of the issues which the saffron outfit would raise during electioneering.
Sources in the party said that the combination of the BJP chief and Uttar Pradesh chief minister Yogi Adityanath would lead the electioneering, while the party would unleash Prime Minister Narendra Modi at the peak of the campaigning in the state.