With unrest and anger mounting over ticket distribution in the BJP, a well-built bodyguard was seen shadowing party chief Vijender Gupta everywhere on Tuesday. Party sources say he has hired the guard in the wake of mass resignations and protests from spurned councillors and workers.
"The bodyguard is expected to keep him away from physical harm. On Sunday, spokesperson of Delhi BJP Vijay Jolly and MLA Dharam Dev Solanki were roughed up by miffed party workers outside Delhi BJP in-charge Venkaiah Naidu's residence," said a party worker. He said the bodyguard's hiring has been a hush-hush affair.
Amongst those angry with the state president are supporters of Naraina councillor Malti Verma. They burnt his effigy outside the state BJP office on Pandit Pant Marg.Tuesday witnessed more tensions as Jagdish Mamgain, one of MCD's prominent faces and chairman of works committee, resigned after being denied a ticket. He sent his resignation to national president Nitin Gadkari, alleging that Delhi BJP chief Vijender Gupta, his wife and a relative have emerged as a "parallel power centre" in the state unit.
Mamgain, who joined BJP in 1981, wrote, "Honest and mass-based party councillors and office-bearers have been shown the door. There are serious charges of party tickets being sold to tainted people or their family members at the cost of genuine party activists."
Even before the names of candidates were released on Monday, protesters on Sunday had gathered outside his residence to protest against the candidature of Gupta's wife Shobha Vijender.
In response, Gupta had on Tuesday appealed to party workers to present a united face during campaigning. He also defended the list of selected candidates and said the names in the list were arrived at only after "detailed and intensive discussions".
Despite several attempts, Gupta could not be reached for response