BJP conclave to give a 'poll cry' to rank and file

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New Delhi, Jan 26 (UNI) Virtually issuing the ''poll cry'' with the announcement of Leader of the Opposition L K Advani as the Prime Ministerial candidate for the next Lok Sabha elections, the BJP's three-day national conclave beginning tomorrow would not only evolve a strategy to wrest power at the Centre but also to face Assembly elections in some states this year.

Besides, it would also take a lead in giving 33 per cent reservation to women in the organisational posts by amending the party's constitution to embarrass the Congress and the Left Parties for not fulfilling their promise to introduce the Women Bill, providing for one-third reservation to the women in the Lok Sabha and state Legislative Assemblies.

The conclave--one day National Executive at Parliament Annexe and two-day National Council meetings at the historic Ram Lila Grounds--is most likely to be devoid of party patriarch and former Prime Minister Atal Bihari Vajpayee who may not be able to attend it for health reasons, party sources said.

Mr Advani, assuming the new assignment as the Prime Ministerial candidate, in his concluding remarks ''Margdarshan'' to the Council meeting on January 29, is expected to hint at the party's poll strategy and ask the partymen to stand united and work steadfastly to achieve the objective of regaining power at the Centre.

About 4,000 delegates, including 40 special invities, are expected to participate in the conclave, party vice president Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi said.

The party is likely to announce the schedule of Mr Advani's nationwide yatra, his way to reach out to the people, to bolster the party's and NDA's prospects in the coming elections, and expose the failures of the UPA government on issues like price rise, inflation, farmers plight, terrorism, internal security and the emotive issue of Ram Setu. It may also target the government on the recent abnormal ''high and low'' in the share market.

The conclave would begin on January 27 with the inaugural speech by party president Rajnath Singh in which he would outline the party's programmes and direction. Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh would have a special reference for the party units for winning the recent Assembly elections. The two-day Council meeting to be held at the Ram Lila Grounds would be an open house where party presidents of various states would present their reports giving party position and preparations for the coming elections. It would amend the party constitution to accommodate 33 per cent reservation for women in all policy making bodies of the organisation.

The party had accepted the report submitted by senior party leader Sushma Swaraj in this regard at its National Executive meeting in Bhopal last year.

The immediate task before the party is to win election in Karnataka where it was 'deceived' by its ally JD(S). Winning the elections in Karnataka is also necessary to keep the morale of the cadres high, set by the electoral victories in Gujarat and Himachal Pradesh. Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhatisgarh are other BJP-ruled states, which would be going to polls later this year where the party would like to retain its power. Delhi Assembly polls, where the Congress government headed by Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit is holding the fort for the past 10 years, is important for the BJP which has recently shown its strength to bounce back by winning the municipal elections.


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