By Rahil Nora Chopra
The Congress has already started laying the groundwork for the assembly elections to be held in Rajasthan next year. Along with this, organic elections are also being prepared in the party to elect the new president. During the Congress Working Committee (CWC) meeting held on March 14, party leaders demanded that Rahul Gandhi take over as president of Congress once again. But the big question remains whether Rahul Gandhi himself is willing to return as party president or not. Is he or not interested in running Congress? According to party sources, leaders believed to be close to him have told other party leaders in private that Rahul has finally relented and agreed to return as president of Congress, but through a proper election to be held in the month. August-September to elect a new party chief.
BJP SEEKS SUPPORT FROM CM NITISH FOR NDA PRESIDENTIAL CANDIDATE
Both the current and former Chief Minister of Bihar, Nitish Kumar and Lalu Prasad Yadav, have always shown their love and affection for cows. Now the Minister of State for Home Affairs, BJP leader Nityanand Rai, has chosen to follow the beaten path. Dressed in a lungi, he carried and took out a bucket and sat down to milk a cow on his farm in Vaishali district of Bihar in the presence of several media outlets. Viewers noted that Rai tried to project himself as a leader of the Yadavs and the potential main ministerial face of his party. The BJP is currently the largest party in Bihar and he believes that sooner or later he will lead the government. While Rai does not want to miss any opportunity to become CM and leaves no stone unturned in pursuit of the same, on the other hand Union Minister Dharmendra Pradhan’s visit to Patna on May 5 for a meeting of An Hour with CM Nitish is seen as the BJP leadership’s enthusiastic effort to assure Nitish of the BJP’s relentless and unequivocal support for his current mandate in Bihar. Pradhan’s visit is also seen as the BJP’s aim to persuade the Bihar CM to endorse the NDA candidate for the presidential election. Pradhan’s visit quells some of the speculation abounding in Patna that Nitish could be made to accept a top post at the Centre, paving the way for a BJP leader to head the coalition government in Bihar. The Union minister is fast becoming the BJP contact person for JD(U), due to his excellent link with Bihar CM Nitish Kumar.
BJP’S BOMMAI DILEMMA APPROACHES AS KARNATAKA ELECTION CLOSES
The BJP is a divided house in Karnataka ahead of the 2023 assembly elections. Karnataka Chief Minister Basavaraj Bommai met with Union Home Minister Amit Shah on Wednesday May 11 and made an announcement on the expansion of the cabinet that would take place in the coming days. The Chief Minister said that Shah had assured him that he would discuss with the party chairman, JP Nadda, and make the desired decisions on the expansion of the Cabinet. BJP sources said the meeting was held to finalize the list of candidates and to attend to crucial pending issues, such as granting a place in the Cabinet to the son of former Chief Minister BS Yediyurappa, BY Vijayendra, among others. However, the party is still wary of the influence of BS Yeddiyurappa, the strong man of Lingayat who has tremendous influence over the community. The dilemma for the BJP is whether to remove Bommai and admit he is a failure, or keep him and displease other Lingayat leaders, including Yeddiyurappa.
CONGRESS PREPARES FOR SURVEYS IN HIMACHAL ASSEMBLY
Ahead of the Himachal Pradesh assembly elections, the ruling BJP and the opposition Congress are busy showing off their respective strengths to garner broad support. Both parties are busy organizing political rallies and roadshows for the same purpose. Himachal Pradesh is often said to have a tendency to change its government every five years. Congress and the BJP have alternated in state government since 1985. Congress has tried to take the lead by changing the president of its state unit and setting up the campaign committee for the assembly election. Congress appointed Mandi MP Pratibha Singh as chairperson of the state unit, who happens to be the widow of the late Virbhadra Singh, a six-time chief minister who passed away in July 2021. Congress is clearly trying to cash in on The legacy of Virbhadra Singh. The party has also appointed Sukhwinder Singh Sukhu as chairman of the election campaign committee and Mukesh Agnihotri as leader of the state Congress legislative party.
HAVE FULL FAITH IN CM NITISH IN THE CASTE CENSUS: TEJASHWI YADAV
CM Nitish Kumar’s presence at an Iftaar party hosted by Rashtriya Janata Dal (RJD) leader Tejashwi Yadav on April 22, just one day before he moved from House 1 Aney Marg, has added to the speculation that both sides may be warming up to the idea of coming together to form the government. Now, the opposition leader in the Bihar assembly, Tejashwi Yadav, said on Wednesday that he has full faith in Chief Minister Nitish Kumar on the caste census issue. “The prime minister has assured me that he will soon convene an all-party meeting to discuss the modalities of carrying out this exercise in the state. I have full faith in the words of CM Nitish Kumar. Since he has given us the security, we must wait for a while,” Yadav said. “The prime minister told me that he is also in favor of conducting the caste-based census in the state,” Yadav added. Last year, Kumar led an all-party delegation, of which Yadav was also a part, to meet with Prime Minister Narendra Modi to demand an all-caste census. Faced with the Center’s refusal, he indicated that he was ready to conduct a state-specific poll after calling an all-party meeting. (IPA Service)
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