'Favouritism and nepotism' (Patthavad aur parivarvad) were the key factors again during the ticket distribution process for civic bodies polls in Bhopal, Indore, Jabalpur and Chhindwara in the BJP, bemoaned some BJP workers on Tuesday.
The BJP workers may have held some grudge on account of their or their favoured ones being denied tickets but their accusations gained currency given the profile of the candidates for the corporators' seats.
A good number of candidates selected are known cronies of individual leaders including MLAs and ministers. For instance, in Bhopal higher education minister Umashankar Gupta, MLAs Rameshwar Sharma and Vishwas Sarang had their upper hands in tickets distribution.
Though in Indore urban administration and development minister Kailash Vijayvargiya and his camp were dejected over mayoral election ticket being given to the MLA Malini Gaud, he and his close lieutenant MLA Ramesh Mendola managed to get some of their followers the party tickets in the wards of their influence in the city.
Similarly, local MP Rakesh Singh, another MP Prahlad Patel, minister of state for health and family welfare Sharad Jain, mayor Prabhat Sahu, Harendrajeet Singh Babbu had their say in the ticket distribution among their followers. In Chhindwara local leader Chandrabhan Singh put his foot down to ensure mayoral election ticket to his follower.
"It seems the organization has lost its voice. The general secretary (organisation) at the state level and general secretaries (organisations) in the party in different regions were expected to protect the interest of the committed workers by raising their voices if the party leaders overlooked them. But unfortunately, their voices these days seemed to be in tune with the voice of the party leaders," said a party worker on conditions of anonymity.
"It's not ticket distribution but prize distribution among the favoured ones by MLAs and other influential individuals. Idol worship overshadowed the party's ideology. Victory or defeat apart this was an unfortunate episode in the party like BJP which grew at the strength of great leaders like Shayama Prasad Mukherjee, Pt Deendayal Upadhyay and Kushabhau Thakre," said a party leader.
However, the state BJP media in charge Dr Hitesh Bajpai differed from such party workers who are talking of idol worship vs ideology. Bajpai said the BJP was a cadre based party and the norms laid down by senior leaders of the party were followed by the party in ticket distribution.