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BJP cadre told to reach out to government beneficiaries in MP ahead of assembly polls

Assembly polls: BJP has asked its workers assigned for each of 65,000 polling booths in poll-bound Madhya Pradesh to reach out in person to the beneficiaries of the state government’s welfare schemes .

Madhya Pradesh Elections 2018 Updated: Nov 01, 2018 19:48 IST
Ranjan Srivastava
Ranjan Srivastava
Hindustan Times, Bhopal
Madhya Pradesh Election 2018,Madhya Pradesh Election 2018 News,Madhya Pradesh Constituency
Madhya Pradesh goes to poll on November 28.(HT FILE PHOTO)

The ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has asked its workers assigned for each of 65,000 polling booths in pollbound Madhya Pradesh to reach out in person to the beneficiaries of the state government’s welfare schemes to negate anti-incumbency ahead of the November 28 assembly polls, according to two party functionaries.

The BJP has been in power in the state, which goes to the polls on November 28, since 2003. Shivraj Singh Chouhan became the chief minister two years later. Earlier this week, HT reported the BJP was considering to drop one-third of its 165 legislators over poor performance to overcome anti-incumbency and to return to power for the fourth time. BJP leaders familiar with the ticket selection process had told HT the party’s surveys over the last six months suggest that there is “strong” anti-incumbency against 35 to 40% of the lawmakers, including at least six ministers in Chouhan’s cabinet. The party had conducted surveys after it lost four assembly by-polls and found the party workers were unhappy with the government’s functioning.

“No convention, no meeting at the booth, panchayat or ward level. Go to the homes of the beneficiaries. Talk to entire families. Tell them what we have done for them and what we will do for them,’’ a BJP leader quoted directions issued to the workers as saying. He said the workers have been asked to give the beneficiaries letters from Chouhan and state BJP president Rakesh Singh. “Present a rosy picture of Madhya Pradesh under the BJP government. If they are convinced, then urge them to become volunteers and take you to four to five families more for appealing to them to vote for the BJP.”

Another BJP leader said there are an estimated 1.64 crore beneficiaries of schemes like Ladli Laxmi Yojna, Mukhyamantri Kanyadan Yojna, Mukhyamantri Teerth Darshan Yojna, Mukhyamantri Swarozgar Yojna for farmers, women and youths. They belong to one crore families and the workers have been asked to reach out over four days beginning Monday. “Our aim is to contact all one crore families over four days through booth level workers. This is to ensure that the Congress propaganda does not mislead them,’’ said one of the leaders. “It is possible that some of the beneficiaries may be unhappy with us. This will help us know about them much before polling and we will try to persuade them further.”

State BJP spokesman Rajneesh Agrawal said, “We are in the field and with people whereas Congress is nowhere. This is the basic difference between the BJP and the Congress.”

“That is why it is making a last-ditch attempt to retain power. But they will not be successful...”, Agrawal’s Congress counterpart, Shobha Oza, said.

First Published: Oct 26, 2018 15:24 IST