CHENNAI: The party has failed to forge a strong alliance to face the upcoming Assembly polls, but BJP’s Tamil Nadu president Tamilisai Soundararajan remains upbeat that the State unit is fully geared up to face the elections, having completed all grass root-level works. This is a crucial election not just for the party but also for her, and she is confident and enthusiastic about the performance in this elections.
“We have not missed the bus. We will make up for the little setbacks caused by the alliance issues very soon. We are submitting our list of candidates to the Parliamentary board tomorrow. The first list is likely to be released on Friday or the next day. As of now, around 15 organisations are on board, with whom we have already completed a round of talks with them. We have held talks with the IJK for seat-sharing,” Tamilisai told T Muruganandham during a quick chat in the midst of a hectic day.
The BJP has failed to forge a strong alliance as it has been claiming...
Waiting for an alliance is not a sin in politics. Further, the alliance issue prevails not only for us. The DMK is yet to complete the alliance formation. The PWA was formed three months ago but only now they are able to come to a shape. We have formed a strong alliance for the 2014 Lok Sabha elections with an objective of continuing it for the Assembly elections.
We have scored 19.5 per cent of votes in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. To take this positive signal further, we have tried to keep the 2014 alliance. Unfortunately, each and every leader has his own expectations. We are not afraid of meeting the people. This election is being fought on different note - change of guard from the DMK and the AIADMK.
What do you say about the charge that the BJP has almost wasted a golden opportunity in the Assembly polls?
No, I don’t buy this view. In an election, 50 days is a much longer period. Definitely we will catch that place. For a party like BJP which has enthusiastic cadre, it will not be a difficult job. I am sure we have not missed the bus. Maybe, there are some small setbacks due to alliance issues. But we will make good that gap by focussing vigorously on campaign in the coming days.
General notion is that we have only around two per cent votebank. But I am sure we have more than 10 per cent right now. Because we have enrolled 50 lakh members recently. Previously we don’t have any booth-level ‘kaaryakartaas’. Now we have them for over 40,000 booths in the State. So far, 400 training programmes for Assembly elections have been conducted. We have not publicised what we have done at grass root-level. There is an undercurrent support for the BJP among the people. Last time, 1.40 crore people did not vote in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections. This time, these votes would come to the NDA.
What is the plan for election related works in the coming days ?
BJP national president Amit Shah will be addressing a mammoth public meeting at Tiruchy in 10 days to commence our election campaign. We are going to introduce video vans. We will start conducting public meetings in all Assembly constituencies with the slogan - ‘Thamizhagam Engum Thaamarai Muzhakkam’ from April 1. Our manifesto would be released soon.
What would be the highlight of your campaign ?
We do not wish to carry out a negative campaign finding fault with others. We are going to highlight the achievements of the Narendra Modi government. The BJP has proved that the national party can give good governance in Madhya Pradesh, Gujarat etc. There is a notion in Tamil Nadu that only regional parties alone can show concern for the people of Tamil Nadu. We will prove that we too have a focus on State’s interests.