Newly elected Madhya Pradesh Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) president Prabhat Jha on Sunday said the party would strive to retain power in the state for the third time in a row but parried questions on the return of Uma Bharati to the fold.
"I will strive hard to make sure that the BJP returns to power next time also," Jha said Sunday while addressing his first ever press conference after being elected state BJP president Saturday.
The BJP has been in power for two consecutive terms in 2004 and 2009.
Jha said that the money spent on hoardings could be spent on the poor and at the same time also warned partymen against corruption.
While answering questions on the number of hoardings that had sprung up across the city, Jha said that he had directed the removal of hoardings carrying his pictures.
On the issue of firebrand Uma Bharti's return into the BJP, he said: "she is a very big leader and I am a small party leader."
On the issue of corruption, he said: "Once a person is proved guilty by the court of law, he or she will not remain in the party for a second."
However, when asked about state Industry Minister Kailash Vijaywargiya's alleged involvement in a land scam in Indore, he said that the Lokayukta is probing the matter and unless the inquiry is completed, he will not comment on the issue.
Jha also said that he would, on the lines of chief minister and his ministerial colleagues, make his assets public within 15 days and also expected other party functionaries to do so.
Jha also declared the setting up three sub offices of the Bhopal BJP headquarters in Jhabua, Mandla and Chindwara to strengthen the party in the tribal dominated areas of the state and added that he will visit these offices at least once a month.
He said that his new team would be constituted after consultation with senior party leaders, adding that the present team will continue to work till then.