BHOPAL: UP to 80 of the 165 BJP legislators in Madhya Pradesh, including some ministers, might be denied tickets for the November 28 Assembly elections, with the party facing a resurgent Congress and anti-incumbency after 15 years in power.
After a series of internal surveys carried out by the ruling party in all 230 Assembly segments in the past few months, a ground-level survey by the workers of its parent organization, the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh, has pointed towards growing anti-incumbency against dozens of BJP MLAs, including some ministers.
The findings of the survey, which were discussed by top RSS functionaries in Madhya Pradesh with BJP national president Amit Shah during his recent two-day visit to the state, were subsequently discussed with top party leaders in Bhopal on Wednesday.
At the meeting at the chief minister’s residence, which was attended by CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan, state election management committee chief and union minister Narendra Singh Tomar, state party president Rakesh Singh and the party’s state secretary (organization), Suhas Bhagat, the state unit of the BJP was told by RSS leaders that not denying tickets to 70-80 non-performing MLAs could result in the party losing dozens of seats in the November 28 polls.
The party leaders were also told about growing resentment against the BJP among upper caste voters over the amendment of the SC/ST Act. The BJP leaders were informed that angry upper caste voters might not vote for the Congress, but their votes might go to outfits such as Samanya Pichra Alpsankhyak Kalyan Samaj (Sapaks) Samaj Party, or they might press the NOTA button, which might result in the BJP winning fewer seats.
With the RSS the issue, the BJP might find it difficult to field the non-performing MLAs in the polls, a senior BJP leader told The New Indian Express on Friday.
As per informed sources, two- or three-term MLAs whose victory margin has shrunk with each Assembly poll, and MLAs who won by small margins (900 to 5,000 votes) in 2013 are likely to be denied tickets. Some MLAs who won with sizeable margins in 2013 but are not popular with voters and party workers due to their style of functioning might also be denied tickets.
A survey by the RSS has found growing anti-incumbency against dozens of BJP MLAs, including some ministers. The RSS has told the BJP state unit that not denying tickets to 70-80 non-performing MLAs could result in the party losing dozens of seats in the November 28 polls.