'BJP to retain power in MP, Raj, Chattisgarh'

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Bhopal, Nov 25: The ruling BJP is confident of retaining power in Madhya Pradesh with a 'comfortable majority' at the hustings on the basis of its government's performance and personal image of Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan, according to senior BJP leader Sushma Swaraj.

Winding up the party's post-election briefing at state BJP office here today, Mrs Swaraj, who claimed to have undertaken campaign for five days in the state, said BJP retaining power was based on her self-assessment and also reporting from party units across Madhya Pradesh.

In the six poll-bound states, she said, BJP was confident of retaining power in Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh and Rajasthan, wresting power from Congress in Delhi, emerging as the single largest party in Jammu and Kashmir and opening its account in Mizoram, where the party fielded only 9 candidates out of total 40 seats.

The senior BJP leader admitted that the party came to power in Madhya Pradesh in 2003 on the basis of negative votes against Congress, but this time, BJP would retain power on a positive note.

Development and welfare programmes of the government, besides Mr Chouhan's personal image as a hard-working and easily accessible chief minister had boosted the party's prospects, she added.

When asked why the BJP was getting maximum notices from the Election Commission for violating the model code of conduct, Mrs Swaraj justified it saying BJP was getting maximum notices since it was the largest party and the Election Commission was more cautious now.

Referring to instances of character assassination of women candidates, the BJP leader said personally she was against making such remarks affecting the honour of fair sex and added that she disagreed with the contention of BJP's role behind distribution of a pamphlet against a woman candidate from Bhopal.

''Unless it was made legally binding and the women reservation bill was passed, it was nearly impossible to give adequate number of tickets to women. In Madhya Pradesh, tickets were given to women in only ten per cent constitutencies'', Mrs Swaraj added.


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