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Sniffing polls, BJP gets cracking

Get cracking – was the word from the BJP brass to party units as it sensed early general elections after the Congress-led UPA and the Left seemed set to part ways over the nuclear deal.
By Shekhar Iyer | Hindustan Times, New Delhi
UPDATED ON JUN 20, 2008 12:44 AM IST

Get cracking – was the word from the BJP brass to party units as it sensed early general elections after the Congress-led UPA and the Left seemed set to part ways over the nuclear deal.

The main Opposition party is focused on its preparation, rather than on whether the government survives or falls. Senior BJP leaders took stock of the situation at Leader of Opposition L.K. Advani’s residence and reviewed the state of preparedness of the party for the elections – scheduled to be held in Apri-May if held in the normal course.

But if the polls were to be held in November-December, the BJP leaders agreed that there was little time left before the party got a good grip of things — from identifying right candidates to preparing manifesto, besides rolling out of campaign plans in every state.

A key feature is the proposed plan to shift “talents” from Rajya Sabha to Lok Sabha. Senior BJP leaders are to enter the fray. They may include Jaswant Singh (Jaipur), Murli Manohar Joshi (Varanasi), Sushma Swaraj (one of the seats from Delhi or Hoshangabad-MP), Yashwant Sinha (Hazaribagh), and even Arun Jaitley (Palampur-HP or one of the seats of his choice). For Lucknow, the party will consult Atal Bihari Vajpayee who may take the final call.

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