Chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan's elevation to the newly constituted parliamentary board of the BJP on Tuesday has put to rest the speculation questioning his equation with party top brass in Delhi.
The party's defeat to Congress in the Bahoriband assembly seat on Monday had given rise to the question whether it is not a pointer to the waning of Chouhan's popularity. But Chouhan's featuring on the all-important party panel signals that his equation with the party's central leadership remains unchanged.
This is the second up-ward surge on the chief minister's popularity graph in as many weeks. The previous being the appointment of Nand Kumar Singh Chauhan— the chief minister's and union minister Narendra Singh Tomar for nominee for the coveted post.
Tuesday reaffirming comes a shot-in-the arm for Chouhan, who is well into his third term as CM, besides being an MP for five terms.
Madhya Pradesh substantial representation on the 12-members national parliamentary board— the highest from any state— augurs well for the Chouhan's rising political clout and stature.
Beside Chouhan, union external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj, who represents Vidisha in Parliament and union minister for social justice Thawar Chand Gehlot have found place on the party's parliamentary board.
In the 12 member body, Chouhan, party president Amit Shah and senior RSS functionary Ramlal are the only leaders who are not members of parliament.
There is an interesting angle to Shivraj Singh Chouhan's elevation to the parliamentary board.
In the run up to the national election in Apri-May, prime minister Narendra Modi was nominated to the BJP parliamentary board while he was the chief minister of Gujarat.
At that time, no other chief minister was a member of the board and party leader LK Advani is said to have demanded Chouhan's inclusion.
Ironically, when Chouhan was finally inducted on the board, Advani failed to find a place and was appointed a "mentor".
Meanwhile, in another development, state urban administration minister Kailash Vijayvargiya was on Tuesday appointed as the election in charge for Haryana.