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BJP's plan for 2014: 11 campaign panels to be named tomorrow

July 18, 2013 20:54 IST

The Bharatiya Janata Party parliamentary board on Thursday discussed the allocation of election campaign responsibilities among its general secretaries and top office-bearers in the run-up to the assembly polls in five states and Lok Sabha polls next year.

Party sources said the committees, which will shoulder various aspects of the poll campaign, from rallies and reaching out to the youth to preparation of the manifesto and publicity literature, will be announced on Friday.

The parliamentary board had earlier authorised BJP President Rajnath Singh and Election Campaign Committee Chief Narendra Modi to form these committees and appoint the members. The views of the board will be given due respect while finalising the names, sources said.

While election in-charges and campaign heads for the assembly polls to be held in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Delhi will be appointed, it is unlikely that Leader of the Opposition in Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj and her Rajya Sabha counterpart Arun Jaitley will head any of them. However, senior leaders will be involved in the overall campaign to these election-bound states.

Nitin Gadkari has reportedly turned down the offer to head the poll campaign for Delhi as BJP's prospects are grim and being a former president of the party he feels it is a minor responsibility. Gadkari was keen on getting the charge for Rajasthan.

Eleven committees are likely to be announced on Friday. These will deal with conduct of rallies, public meetings; preparation of the manifesto; publicity literature, advertisement and media management; reaching out to various sections of the society -- youth, women, professionals, rural and urban voters; campaign through social media; campaign programme of leaders and their travel plans; logistics and so on.

While general secretaries have been given charge of states and organisational responsibilities, the new list is likely to be about their roles and functions.

Singh and Modi will consult the leaders concerned as well as the RSS before coming out with the list. An attempt has been made to ensure a collective role for all senior leaders and to ensure that no feathers are ruffled, sources said.

Thursday's meeting of the parliamentary board was the first after Modi's meeting with RSS Chief Mohan Bhagwat in Nagpur on July 16.

Bhagwat's presence in the capital had the rumour mills working overtime that he will vet the list. However, party leaders denied this. The RSS chief left for Ranchi later in the day.

Sources said most of the committees were finalised by Modi and Singh in their marathon four-hour meeting on Wednesday. The parliamentary board also discussed the issues to be flagged by the party among the people both inside and outside Parliament. The crucial bills and matters that the main Opposition's plans to raise during the monsoon session -- beginning from August 5 -- were also discussed. BJP sources said the party will support the Food Security Ordinance when it comes up for voting in Parliament but will

press for amendments to clauses on which it has certain issues.

On the government's decision earlier this week to allow more Foreign Direct Investment in insurance (from 26 to 49 per cent) and telecom (from 74 to 100 per cent) sector, the BJP has decided to oppose the move in Parliament.

The floods in Uttarakhand and laxity in relief and rescue operations, state of the economy, the security scenario in the country and the differences between the Central Bureau of Investigation and the Intelligence Bureau, and corruption will be the issues that will occupy centre-stage for the BJP in Parliament.

Image: BJP's Election Campaign Committee Chief Narendra Modi with party President Rajnath Singh

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