Amit Shah’s stern message to new BJP Team: focus on development, people

Party wants visible results in LS polls

Sanjeev Pargal
JAMMU, May 1: Newly inducted team of BJP Ministers has received “very strict instructions and guidelines’’ from party’s national president, Amit Shah to improve governance on their part, focus on development, address people’s problems and give due weightage to the party cadre as the party wants “visible results’’ from the Ministers in upcoming Parliamentary elections in Jammu and Ladakh, which were now less than a year away.
BJP insiders told the Excelsior that the direction hasn’t only gone to the newly inducted Ministers but also those, who were given a lease of life despite obtaining resignations from them through three top BJP leaders of the party high command to revive lost ground of the BJP in Jammu and Ladakh regions and improve image in Kashmir region, where party has very little presence despite being in power for more than three years now.
“Amit Shah, who has his own set up of obtaining information on party and Government performance in all States, reportedly had reports that BJP’s graph has gone down during three years in the entire State as party Ministers and legislators focused less on development works and addressing people’s issues and more on transfers, which didn’t go well with the people,’’ they said, adding that a categoric direction has now gone to the BJP Ministers that their performance will be reviewed after every three months and there will be “no scope of giving chance to non-performers’’ as the party wants to repeat its 2014 performance in the Lok Sabha elections.
In 2014 Parliamentary polls, BJP had won both Lok Sabha seats of Jammu-Poonch and Udhampur-Doda and lone seat of Ladakh, making it 3/6 in the State. The party is of the view that it stands no chance of winning any out of three Lok Sabha seats in the Kashmir valley and should, therefore, focus on retaining all three seats it had won in 2014.
Sources said the BJP high command has reports that “anti-incumbency factor’’ against State party Ministers and legislators could mar the prospectus of Lok Sabha candidates, who have, otherwise, performed up to the expectations and even beyond that. They added that the BJP high command now wants the Ministers as well as legislators to go all out to overcome this ‘anti-incumbency’ wave in some parts of Jammu and Ladakh regions.
Admitting that some of the party Ministers had completely lost connection with the masses including BJP workers, insiders said the BJP was now determined not to allow this happen and accordingly has conveyed clear cut instructions to all the party Ministers to make all possible efforts to take the party to new heights.
“The party has also introduced new concept of review of party Ministers’ performance after every three months,’’ sources said, adding the party feels that this idea would go long way in improving working of the Ministers as they would always remain on tenterhooks.
The BJP high command has also directed the Ministers to give boost to developmental works including those being executed under Prime Minister’s Development Package (PMDP) and Centrally Sponsored Schemes (CSS).
“The BJP high command has reports that work on projects under PMDP and CSS were missing deadlines due to slow pace and has asked the party Ministers to regularly monitor them to ensure their timely completion,’’ sources said. It may be mentioned here that cost of the PMDP has gone up from Rs 80,068 crore to Rs 1 lakh crore in just two and a half year time due to cost overrun of some projects in view of delay in their execution.
Yet another significant advise to the BJP Minister pertained to avoid “over speaking’’. The BJP high command was of the view that since Jammu and Kashmir is a sensitive State, not only the BJP Ministers but office bearers should speak in coordination. They have also been advised to consult their national leaders before giving statements on controversial issues.
Meanwhile, the BJP high command has set the process in motion for election of new State party president in place of Sat Sharma ‘CA’, who was yesterday inducted as a Cabinet Minister.
The BJP high command has been working on four names for the post of new party president and would shortly take a call on them as it wants to free Sat Sharma from additional responsibility of the post of party chief. The BJP has the norm of ‘one man one post’ under which Sat Sharma has decided to quit as the State party chief after his appointment as Minister for Housing and Urban Development Department.