BJP eyes Bengal, Odisha and Telangana to improve tally in 2019
After its splendid victory in Uttar Pradesh, where it won 312 seats of its won and decimated the formidable Sp-congress alliance to a mere 54 seats, the BJP seems to be in a mood of no retreat. The fact that it was also able to form a government in Goa and Manipur, where it was a distant second to the Congress but managed to pull through a majority with the help of smaller parties and independents who were reportedly bribed, the BJP is confident its "by hook or by crook" policy will bring it to power in states it had hitherto not existed. And the east tops its list.
The BJP is eyeing the eastern states of Telangana, Odisha and West Bengal. The decision to hold its national executive meet in Bhubaneshwar on 16 April was also part of its strategy to bolster its presence in the Naveen Patnaik ruled state. With opposition Congress in the doldrums, the BJP is hoping to fill up the anti-biju
Janta Dal space and offer tough competition to the ruling party by the time the state goes to the hustings for the 2019 general elections.
In fact to celebrate the grand win in UP, the national executive meet, is sources are to be believed, was initially being planned to be held in Lucknow. But it was BJP president Amit Shah who changed the venue to the capital of Odisha as the event could be a important platform to boost up the cadre and get them in election mode. It also sent a clear message to the people of the state that the BJP is readying itself as the alternative.
In West Bengal, the BJP is in a never-before like war mode against Didi aka Mamata Banerjee, Chief Minister of the state. The CBI is allegedly being used to harass ruling Trinamool Congress leaders. In January this year, the CBI had arrested Sudip Bandyopadhyaya, senior leader of the TMC and MP.
On 17 April, the CBI has further booked 13 Narada scam accused under Section 7 and 13 of Prevention of Corruption Act, and it is likely that the ace investigating agency will also arrest them. The whole exercise is being viewed by many as the BJP'S witch-hunt against the Mamata led government in an attempt to gain ground in the state and win a handful of seats in the 2019 Lok Sabha polls.
Already, the BJP has surprised poll pundits when in Kanthibypolls in April, it secured 30% plus votes and bagged the second place after pushing the CPM far behind.
The same strategy is being played out in Telangana where after an initial bonhomie with Chief Minister K. Chandrasekhar Rao and his Telangana Rashtrasamithi, the BJP has changed track to emerge as the principal opposition party. The Congress is in bad shape in both Telangana and the Seemandhra region following the bifurcation of Andhra Pradesh in 2014.
If sources are to be believed, the BJP has also identified nine Lok Sabha constituencies where it is going to use all tactics to outsmart the TRS. These nine seats are Secunderabad, which it already occupies; Hyderabad, Nizamabad, Bhongir, Mahabubnagar, Karimnagar, Malkajgiri, Medak, and Warangal.