Bharatiya Janata Party national president Amit Shah arrived in Ahmedabad on Thursday and initiated talks with party leaders at his residence as a part of an exercise to finalise the name of the successor of Anandiben Patel, who resigned as the chief minister of Gujarat.
State BJP in-charge Dinesh Sharma and party treasurer Surendra Patel met Shah on Thursday morning upon his arrival. The other top state leaders and ministers are expected to meet him in the evening.
Anandiben had on Wednesday submitted her resignation to the Governor, after the party’s parliamentary board in Delhi accepted her offer to resign, paving way for selection of a new chief minister for the BJP-ruled Gujarat, to lead the party in the 2017 state assembly polls.
Ahead of her resignation, Sharma engaged in hectic consultation with top BJP leaders and ministers in Gandhinagar over selection of the next CM.
Sharma told media persons that BJP legislature party meeting in the presence of state observers will decide the name of the next chief minister by Friday.
Though suspense still prevails about the next CM, the names doing rounds as potential successor to Patel include the ‘ number two’ in the Cabinet and Health Minister Nitin Patel, Union Minister Purshottam Rupala and assembly speaker Ganpat Vasava, a tribal leader.
State BJP chief Vijay Rupani’ s name was earlier in the contention but he indicated on Wednesday that he is not in the race as he is happy with his current task.
Nitin Patel has now emerged as a strong contender for the post.