Shah calls all BJP Ministers, Sr leaders to Delhi; meeting today

Excelsior Correspondent
JAMMU, June 18: Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) national president Amit Shah has summoned all 10 BJP Ministers, State party president and general secretaries to New Delhi tomorrow for a high-level meeting to review political and security situation in Jammu and Kashmir.
The meeting is scheduled for 12 noon tomorrow at the party headquarters in New Delhi, BJP sources told the Excelsior.
BJP general secretary and party’s pointman on Jammu and Kashmir, Ram Madhav, would also join the meeting, they said.
This is the first high-level meeting of the BJP’s Jammu and Kashmir unit called by Amit Shah in New Delhi after month-long ceasefire in the State, which was called off by the Central Government yesterday in view of spurt in incidents of violence.
BJP insiders, however, said that focus of tomorrow’s party meeting called by Shah would be on initiating preparations well in advance for next year’s Lok Sabha elections as the party wants to retain all three Parliamentary seats it had won in 2014.
“The strategy for contesting the elections including whether the two coalition partners-PDP and BJP-would fight the elections in alliance with each other or separately, will also figure at the meeting,” sources said.
Amit Shah, who is himself scheduled to visit Jammu on June 23 to attend a function on death anniversary of Shyama Prasad Mukherjee, was likely to review functioning of the Government especially the BJP Ministers and organizational unit in the sensitive border State, which was facing multiple problems including militancy, border shelling and firing etc.
Sources said all 10 BJP Ministers including Deputy Chief Minister Kavinder Gupta besides State party president Ravinder Raina and four general secretaries left for New Delhi today to attend the meeting.
On April 30, the BJP had inducted new faces in the Council of Ministry by replacing Deputy Chief Minister Dr Nirmal Singh with Kavinder Gupta and bringing-in new faces-Devender Manyal, Rajiv Jasrotia and Shakti Parihar besides elevating Sunil Sharma to the Cabinet rank. Bali Bhagat and Priya Sethi were dropped while Dr Nirmal Singh was appointed as the Legislative Assembly Speaker. Prior to this, Choudhary Lal Singh and Chander Prakash Ganga had also resigned as the Cabinet Ministers over Rassana incident row.
This is first high-level meeting of the BJP called by Amit Shah after rejig of party’s Ministers in the State Government.
Sources pointed out that the BJP wanted to gear up well in advance for the Lok Sabha elections and Amit Shah could discuss the party’s strategy with the Ministers and senior organizational functionaries.
In 2014 Parliamentary polls, BJP had won Jammu-Poonch, Udhampur-Doda and Ladakh Lok Sabha seats i.e. three out of total six seats in the State. Rest three were won by the PDP. However, National Conference president, Dr Farooq Abdullah had wrested Srinagar Lok Sabha seat from the PDP in last year’s by-poll while Anantnag Parliamentary constituency was vacant for the past more than two years now after the resignation of Chief Minister Mehbooba Mufti as by-poll couldn’t be held to that constituency.
Party sources asserted that the BJP leadership, both at national and State level, was well aware that it was in no position to win any of the three seats of Kashmir valley and should focus on three constituencies which it had won in 2014.