The BJP will announce its candidates after other parties, including the Congress, come out with their lists of nominees for the Uttarakhand assembly election due early next year, party insiders said, calling its go-slow approach a well-thought-out strategy.
“That will help us assess the winnability of their candidates, and field better candidates against them,” a senior BJP leader told HT on Tuesday.
State BJP vice president JP Gairola admitted that the party’s central parliamentary board would declare its list of candidates after the poll code would be imposed in the state. “Our party is waiting for the election commission to notify its code of conduct.”
Gairola said the BJP had sorted out its prospective candidates for all the 70 assembly constituencies in the state on the basis of the surveys conducted by the party. “We will announce the final list of our candidates on the basis of those surveys,” he said, adding that the survey results had only 1% error margin. “So, we don’t really need to wait for other parties to announce their candidates,” Gairola said.
Party insiders, however, said the BJP would wait for not only the Congress but also fringe parties to announce their candidates. “In a state like Uttarakhand where there are small assembly constituencies, poll results are swayed to a great deal by the kind of candidates the fringe parties field,” a BJP leader said, referring to the state’s oldest regional party—the Uttarakhand Kranti Dal, the Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP) and the Samajwadi Party (SP).
A BJP leader said the party would also keep an eye on the independent candidates. “On an average, independents account for 14-15% of the candidates in the state elections,” he said, adding that even that small number tilted the results of the last three assembly elections.
“Besides, we will also keep an eye on the rebel candidates not only of our party but also that of other parties, including our main rival (Congress),” a senior BJP leader said, adding that on an average, 13 rebel candidates of the saffron party contest elections against official ones.
“The number of rebel candidates of the ruling party (Congress), who contest assembly elections, comes to about 18, on an average.”
The BJP has launched an exercise aimed to tackle a possible rebellion within the party after distribution of tickets, sources said.