The Sangh Parivar’s reservation about giving tickets to “controversial people” and the “turncoats” held up the release of the second list of BJP candidates for Rajasthan on Friday, it was reliably learnt.
Party officials, however, said that the list could not be released because the Central Parliamentary Board could not discuss it in the absence of Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee who had some important engagements today.
The BJP had, on Wednesday, released the list of candidates for 93 seats and was scheduled to release the second list of over 50 candidates today.
Highly placed party sources told the Hindustan Times that some senior leaders of the party and the Sangh Parivar were opposed to giving tickets to those involved in controversies and who did not have any ideological affinity with the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS).
The candidature of some leaders including Jagdip Dhankar, Vishnu Modi and Pratap Singh Khachariawas, who had switched over from other parties to the BJP, was being opposed by the RSS and its ideologues in the BJP.
Dhankar was earlier seeking the party ticket from Pilani but he lost out to Dr Mool Singh, according to sources. Dhankar is now claiming ticket from any other seat including Chomu, they said. Vishnu Modi, who was earlier involved in a controversial land deal, is seeking ticket from Nasirabad, and Khachariawas, from Bani Park.
A senior BJP leader, on Friday, conveyed his displeasure to the State leadership about the rising profile of State BJP political secretary Chandraraj Singhvi, who has been instrumental in bringing several political leaders into the BJP fold, sources said.
The RSS is also opposed to the candidature of liquor baron Rajaram Meel’s brother Gangajal Meel, who is seeking ticket from Pilibanga, sources said. Some other leaders whose candidature has become a contentious issue between the RSS and the BJP included Prem Singh Bajore, Jaswant Singh Gurjar and Ashok Dogra, it was reliably learnt. To break the deadlock over these candidates, Rajasthan BJP chief Vasundhara Raje was said to have visited the RSS headquarters here on Friday but her meeting with RSS Rajasthan in-charge Indresh reportedly failed to resolve the differences.
The RSS views against the candidature of such leaders are shared by three out of the five Core Committee members including BJP national treasurer Ramdas Agrawal, who has skipped most of the meetings, State BJP general secretary Prakash Chandra and Leader of Opposition Gulab Chand Kataria, highly placed party sources said. These leaders have, however, been denying any differences with the party leadership on these issues.