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Major shake up on the cards in BJP’s Uttarakhand unit

The Uttarakhand BJP might soon undergo a major organisational shake-up after party chief Amit Shah expressed displeasure over its slack functioning, sources said

dehradun Updated: Sep 21, 2017 20:22 IST
Deep Joshi
Deep Joshi
Hindustan Times
Uttarakhand news,BJP,amit shah
BJP president Amit Shah during his two-day tour in Dehradun.(HT Photo)

The Uttarakhand BJP might soon undergo a major organisational shake-up after party chief Amit Shah expressed displeasure over its slack functioning, sources said.

Shah might give chief minister Trivendra Singh Rawat a go-ahead to fill the two vacant Cabinet berths, BJP insiders said. The party did not deny the reports about a possible organisational shake-up, saying a Cabinet rejig was the chief minister’s prerogative.

“Under his (Shah) guidance, we will do whatever is required to strengthen the organisation,” BJP state general secretary Naresh Bansal told HT, .

He agreed that, if carried out, the organisational shake-up would help boost the BJP’s chances in the panchayat and urban body polls and the Lok Sabha elections. Insiders said Shah pulled up the party’s top office bearers for not paying due attention to strengthen the organisation. He also reprimanded them for the lack of coordination between the party’s two key arms—the state government and the organisation.

Shah asserted the party got the massive mandate in the assembly polls winning 57 of the total 70 seats owing to the “sustained efforts” put in by the grassroots level workers. He exhorted them to strengthen the organisation right from the areas falling in over 10,000 polling booths across the state.

The BJP chief warned them that the party would not be able to record a stupendous win in the Lok Sabha polls until efforts were made to strengthen the party at the organisational level. Shah also pulled up senior leaders for carving out the party’s 23 district level units when officially there were only 13 districts.

Bansal neither confirmed nor denied the reports about Shah’s possible nod to Rawat to fill the two Cabinet berths. Party insiders, however, said Shah might give a go-ahead at the BJP’s national executive meet due in Delhi on September 25.

“Carrying out the Cabinet reshuffle or expansion is the sole constitutional prerogative of the chief minister. He alone will take the call when he thinks the time is appropriate,” Bansal said. The twin berths are lying vacant since Rawat constituted his 10-member Cabinet on March 18.

Since then he has been under pressure from most 57 BJP legislators who missed the bus. Supporters of some senior legislators like former assembly speaker Harbans Kapoor even protested.

Notably, Shah appeared to go soft on Rawat and his government. He also put a full stop to rumours that Rawat could be replaced, saying frequently replacing the chief minister “would not happen now as it leads to political instability.” Instead of assessing the ministers’ performance jointly, Shah met them separately. “Those were informal meetings where ministers discussed with him their projects”, a BJP insider told HT.

First Published: Sep 21, 2017 20:22 IST