BJP rift buzz on CM?s yatra trail
The absence of top BJP leaders, particularly Arvind Bhadoria, in Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan's post-victory vikas yatra in the Budhni assembly seat has left tongues wagging about a strain, if not a rift, in the party.Updated: May 19, 2006 13:38 IST
The absence of top BJP leaders, particularly Arvind Bhadoria, in Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan's post-victory vikas yatra in the Budhni assembly seat has left tongues wagging about a strain, if not a rift, in the party.
Bhadoria was in charge of electioneering in Budhni and moved with Chouhan shoulder to shoulder. From campaign to polling booth management to counting of votes, Bhadoria was the CM's pointsman for one and half months.
Words about the strain in the party started doing rounds when Bhadoria, forget other top leaders, was not even invited to attend the yatra, BJP sources said.
Miffed at the treatment, Bhadoria, a protégé of BJP leader Kaptan Singh Solanki, has reportedly stopped interacting with the CM and his ministers and confined himself to his party job.
The sources said Minister for PHE Rampal Singh, who accompanied Chouhan during his yatra, later contacted Bhadoria to express regrets.
In fact the strain, the sources said, surfaced during the by-election when the Election Commission postponed polling from April 24 to May 3 after rival candidates lodged complaints against the CM on misuse of government machinery. The CM was apparently upset at the 'mismanagement' of electioneering by party leaders.
Another sticking point was the a suggestion by some party workers during the post-victory celebrations that Bhadoria be fielded as the BJP nominee in the Vidisha Lok Sabha by-election.
Though an annoyed Bhadoria asked the party workers not to raise it again, some leaders in the CM camp did not like the suggestion at all.
In his attempt to scotch all rumours, BJP office secretary Tapan Bhowmick said the yatra was organised by the CM, not the party, to thank the Budhni voters and hence the question of inviting Bhadoria or any other party leader did not arise.
If the yatra was purely the CM's personal initiative, the presence of Rampal Singh and former Budhni MLA Rajendra Singh, not any other leader, leaves many a question on its trail.
First Published: May 19, 2006 13:38 IST