JAIPUR: Learning from its bitter wounds and memories, BJP administrators are keeping a strict silence over the selection of its new Rajasthan State President. The post has fallen vacant on account of the recent death of its Rajya Sabha MP and former president Madan Lal Saini but unlike the past, when Vasundhara Raje was consulted on every issue, the party bosses are this time giving no weightage to its former CM.
While consultations are on with senior RSS leaders and individual state legislators, the party command has purposely kept Raje out of the selection circus as they are keen to avoid any clash with the former BJP Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje who had triggered a 72-day stalemate last time after her favourite Ashok Parnami was removed.
Moves are afoot to knight the new incumbent but party sources say every exercise is being conducted behind closed doors in a hushed manner so as to avoid any unseemly occurrence like the last time. This is because the earlier stalemate had created fissures within the party leading to unsavoury backbiting and animosities, which many feel cost BJP the state elections.
By keeping things under wraps, it is evident that the anti-Raje camp is on the rise and like Kota MP Om Birla was made Lok Sabha Speaker by Namo-Shah duo, someone completely unaligned to Raje would be made the state president.
Sources indicate that as Jats, Rajputs and SC sections of the society have received representation in the Narendra Modi cabinet, it seems an eminent grass root worker will be anointed as the President of the state wing.
Indications are that while Satish Poonia, who has been General Secretary of the state unit four time is the front runner, several names of MLAs like Rajendra Rathore, Madan Dilawar, Vasudev Devnani and Arun Chaturvedi are in the fray as possible contenders. But since Poonia is from the Jat community that predominantly does not vote for the BJP, a Brahmin leader may get the nod.
"Bjp is a democratic party and its prerogative of central leadership and let them decide who will lead the party here," said Vasudev Devnani, former state minister
"With Narendra Modi’s penchant for the unusual and shocking, many believe Rajya Sabha MP and RSS worker Narayan Lal Panchariya be the dark horse to get the garland. Only time will tell who pips the post at the final bend." said a senior party leader on condition of anonymity