The recent bypoll results, which were a setback for the BJP in some states, have added new dimension to the party’s national executive meeting on Sunday as its top brass is likely to cast a fresh look at its affairs in places like West Bengal, Himachal Pradesh and Rajasthan while deliberating its strategy for the upcoming assembly polls.
All ”important” issues will be up for deliberations, a BJP leader said of the meeting, adding the party is also likely to laud the central government for its handling of the COVID-19 pandemic, including the vaccination drive, and hail Prime Minister Narendra Modi for his development initiatives and successful foreign visits.
The robust revival in economic activities with the record GST collection last month following a slump due to the pandemic is also likely to come up for deliberation at the meeting.
However, it is the bypoll results in three Lok Sabha and 29 assembly seats spread across 13 states and a union territory that may weigh on the minds of the party leadership as it meets for the first time in a physical meeting following the pandemic’s outbreak last year.
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Known for laying great store by every popular verdict, however materially insignificant it may be in the broader context, the BJP leadership may review the party’s affairs in West Bengal, where its fortunes have been sliding since the high of the 2019 Lok Sabha poll, and Himachal Pradesh and Rajasthan, two states where the Congress has put up an impressive performance.
The BJP is in power in Himachal and as such the Congress’s complete sweep of the bypolls in a Lok Sabha and three assembly seats there has caused concerns in the party.
The party has, however, registered a strong show in Assam, where it won all five seats with its ally, and Madhya Pradesh, where it won the lone Lok Sabha and two of the three assembly seats at stake.
A party leader said price rice may have been a factor and added that the Modi government has done the course correction by slashing the petrol and diesel prices followed by the BJP-ruled states giving further relief to people by slashing the Value Added Tax on the fuel prices.
That the opposition-ruled states have not done so may come handy for the BJP leaders in attacking the rivals when they meet.
Modi is likely to deliver the valedictory address at the national executive meeting in which he is expected to shape the party’s stand on a variety of key issues and set the tone for its preparedness as it gears up for the assembly polls early next year in the states of Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Punjab, Goa and Manipur.
BJP president J P Nadda will deliver the inaugural address.