LUCKNOW: Faced with the twin challenge posed by the Samajwadi Party-Bahujan Samaj Party alliance and the Congress’s Priyanka Gandhi-Vadra, the Bharatiya Janata Party plans to “cluster bomb” the electorally-prized state of Uttar Pradesh in the run-up to the Lok Sabha elections.
Besides charting out a series of rallies to be addressed by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP chief Amit Shah, the party will mobilise its present chief ministers, formers CMs and deputy CMs to hold cluster meetings of the cadre across UP.
All 80 Lok Sabha seats have been bunched into 19 clusters with each comprising roughly four parliamentary segments. Union ministers, present and former CMs and Deputy CMs will be entrusted with one cluster each where they will hold regular meetings.
Cluster in-charges will, in turn, have an army of about two crore key local leaders. The attempt is to create energy among the cadre in all 1.40 lakh booths in the state. “We will be talking about the steps taken up by the government in curbing black money, uniform civil code and lack of scams,” Bihar Deputy CM Sushil Modi said.
“The strong presence of our cadre till the last booth will enable us to prevail over the opposition and any rival alliance,” state BJP vice-president and booth committee in-charge JPS Rathore said. In the meantime, Shah will begin stock-taking of the booths by talking to each and every booth in-charge. On January 30, the BJP chief will hold meetings with booth in-charges of 16 Lok Sabha constituencies in the Lucknow, Sitapur, Ayodhya and Gonda clusters.
He will hold similar meetings in Amroha on February 2 and Kashi, Jaunpur and Gorakhpur in eastern UP on February 8. Union Health Minister J.P. Nadda addressed a cluster meeting in Unnao on Sunday. He met the district heads and booth in-charges of the Lucknow, Unnao, Mohanlalganj and Rae Bareli constituencies.
“Nadda told the cadre at Unnao to rebuff the Opposition attack with facts and figures on welfare schemes like the Ujjwala Yojana, Ayushman Bharat, Atal pension plan, Jeevan Jyoti, Mudra yojana, PM Awas Yojana etc. They have been told to make the people aware of the benefits reaching them,” Rathore said.
Sushil Modi will address a cluster comprising the Sultanpur, Pratapgarh, Kaushambi, Allahabad, Phulpur and Amethi constituencies on January 31. Former Madhya Pradesh CM Shivraj Singh Chouhan will address party workers of the Ayodhya cluster comprising Faizabad, Barabanki and Ambedkarnagar Lok Sabha constituencies on February 5.
Uttarakhand CM Trivendra Singh Rawat is expected to address cluster meetings in the Moradabad, Sambhal, Bijnor, Nagina, Amroha and Rampur constituencies on February 10.
Haryana CM Manohar Lal Khattar will handle five Lok Sabha constituencies in Purvanchal covering Kashi, Jaunpur and Gorakhpur. Former Chhattisgarh CM Raman Singh will interact with the party cadre of Kanpur, Akbarpur, Farrukhabad, Kannauj and Etawah constituencies in central UP.
All 80 Lok Sabha seats bunched into 19 clusters, so each cluster will have about four parliamentary segments. Cluster in-charges will lead an army of about two crore key local leaders.