"Rise early, meet people and, most important, don't drink." Thus spake BJP leader and in charge of Madhya Pradesh Anant Kumar at a training camp for MLAs here on Wednesday.
He asked Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan to get rid of cabinet colleagues "who drink, sleep till 11.00 am and don't meet people".
Kumar also suggested while inaugurating the two-day camp that fresh and energetic faces instead be brought in to improve performance. The result: At least a dozen worried men in the 32-strong state cabinet.
Some ministers, however, admitted off-the-record the image of the government indeed took a beating due to the misdemeanors of a few ministers. But they added Kumar should have refrained from lambasting the boozers in public.
Kumar used this strategy earlier at the party's state executive on June 30 in Ratlam. His jibes on "tainted ministers" forced then health minister Anoop Mishra to quit the cabinet.
Mishra had to go because of the political storm over a murder his relatives allegedly committed in Gwalior in June this year.
On Thursday, Industries minister Kailash Vijayvargiya, however, was absent in the training camp although he was in Bhopal.
Vijayvargiya has already been marginalised after his alleged role in a land scam in Indore came to light.
What's more, the BJP leadership is reportedly angry with him for his crushing defeat in the MP Cricket Association election against Union MoS for Commerce and Industry Jyotiraditya Scindia.
The party had advised him not to contest to avoid embarrassment.
But Chouhan assured his ministers: "Ananth Kumarji did not mean what the media has reported."