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HindustanTimes Thu,31 Jul 2014

Local BJP leaders to join Yashwant Sinha’s agitation

HT Correspondent, Hindustan Times  Ranchi, June 16, 2014
First Published: 14:40 IST(16/6/2014) | Last Updated: 14:49 IST(16/6/2014)

Buoyed by its performance in the recent Lok Sabha polls in Jharkhand, the BJP seems to have gone into overdrive in view of the upcoming assembly elections in the state.

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Sources said that after initial reluctance, the party's state leaders agreed to be part of former Union minister Yashwant Sinha’s agitation against power crisis and corruption.

Sinha launched the agitation in Hazaribag on June 2 highlighting the poor power supply in the district, following which his supporters allegedly tied up the general manager of the area board. The former Hazaribag MP was remanded in judicial custody along with 54 others from June 3 when he refused to furnish bail bonds.

Upping the ante, the BJP has now decided to launch a statewide stir from June 16 to June 20 against dismal power situation, erratic water supply and poor law and order, sources said.

While people suffer, the BJP smells political mileage as energy minister Rajendra Prasad Singh has admitted that the situation will improve only after July. There will be demonstrations in front of the district headquarters in a phased manner. Former chief minister Arjun Munda, state president Ravindra Rai, party MPs and MLAs will lead the agitation in their respective areas.

The state leadership initially hesitated to support Sinha's agitation but soon stepped into his shoes in Santhal Parganas. The agitation spilled over in other areas as well.

Sinha, it is learnt, will move for bail in a day or two, as he met senior leaders Rajiv Pratap Rudy and Shahnawaz Hussain in the Hazaribag jail on Thursday. What transpired between them is not clear, however. The grapevine has it that BJP patriarch LK Advani may also visit Sinha in the prison.

Meanwhile, it is being discussed that the agitation will be a booster for the BJP that is willing to contest all the 81 assembly seats. There are murmurs that the BJP might go to the polls projecting its chief ministerial candidate. "We will launch the agitation and then reach out to the people to get exact picture of the constituencies, as per the directives of our party president," said a party leader.

Issues, resources, campaign strategy and the face of a leader are the key factors, he said. While the BJP is comfortable with other issues, it is facing trouble on a consensus leader. Six names are in circulation to lead the election campaign: Arjun Munda, Yashwant Sinha, Raghubar Das, CP Singh, Karia Munda and Union minister Sudarshan Bhagat.


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