Dalits, OBC leaders may get preference in BJP rejig

New Delhi, Jul 8: BJP is set for a significant organisational rejig with its president Amit Shah expected to bring in more Dalits and OBC leaders from states with an eye on the assembly polls, especially in Uttar Pradesh, next year.

Shah has held multiple meetings with Prime Minister Narendra Modi where organisational changes apart from the expansion and reshuffle of the Union Council of Ministers were also discussed.

Organisational rejig in BJP soon

A party leader said more Dalits and OBC leaders are expected in the organisational bodies, including in Shah's team of office bearers. The Prime Minister has been saying that his government is for the poor and weaker sections and it will reflect in the party as well, he said.

There are a few vacancies among general secretaries, the powerful group of office-bearers assigned with handling states and other important party affairs, and a Dalit like Ram Shankar Katheria can be inducted. No Dalit at present holds general secretary's post.

Party vice-presidents Purushottam Rupala, inducted as a Union minister, and B S Yeddyurappa, now its Karnataka chief, are also likely to be replaced with new faces. Agra MP Katheria had been dropped as a Union minister but his RSS background coupled with right social profile are seen as an advantage.

After being dropped, he had said that Shah had offered him an organisational responsibility. Some of the leaders, who were recently replaced as state party chiefs, can make a comeback to the national team, party sources said.

Kamal Sharma of Punjab, Prahlad Joshi of Karnataka and Laxmikant Bajpai of Uttar Pradesh are among such leaders.

As seen in the ministerial expansion, Lok Sabha members can get bigger say in the team of office-bearers besides the national executive.

The heads of various morchas, which focus on different segments of society, are also likely to be changed. The name of Lok Sabha member Poonam Mahajan is doing the rounds as a replacement for Bhartiya Janta Yuva Morcha's chief Anurag Thakur.

BJP's constitution envisages 33 per cent of posts in the national executive for women, whose representation is currently far below this. After being elected as party chief for a fresh term in January, Shah has not made the organisational changes so far.


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