Lucknow, July 23: The BJP is already in poll mode and is leaving no stone unturned to win the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. In 2014, Uttar Pradesh which gave the BJP a massive mandate turned out to be its gateway to the Indian Parliament.
For the BJP's prospects, UP is crucial this time too, but unlike 2014, it will not be a cakewalk. The recent by-poll losses in Gorakhpur and Phulpur was a reminder for the BJP that if the SP and BSP comes together it will not be easy pickings.
The BJP is already strategising its 2019 formula and is even ready to take on a BSP-SP alliance. The BSP-SP alliance which has not been finalised would however be keenly watched, with several observers saying that only a united opposition can fight the BJP.
In 2014, the party's tally in UP stood at 71. However in 2019, the party is unlikely to give at least 50 per cent of the sitting MPs tickets. The party has been conducting several surveys and would issue tickets to only those candidates who stand a 100 per cent chance of winning. Going by initial surveys, there is an indicator that at least 50 per cent of the BJP MPs are unlikely to get another chance.
The party is expected to see new faces contest the UP battle. Senior Cabinet ministers such as S P Sahi, Hirday Narayan Dixit are some of them who may be given a ticket in 2019.