Party has faith in the leadership of Vasundhara Raje, Shivraj Chouhan, Raman Singh and Vijay Rupani, and is working on a strategy to win these states as a precursor to 2019.
The chief ministers of the four BJP-ruled states going to polls ahead of the 2019 general elections – Vasundhara Raje, Shivraj Singh Chouhan, Raman Singh and Vijay Rupani — are expected to remain the faces of the party for the assembly elections along with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
Sources in the BJP said that the party is likely to continue with its trusted faces leading the state governments in Gujarat, Chhattisgarh, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh. The BJP is confident of winning all four assembly polls under the leadership of the state stalwarts, a senior party leader said.
“There is a thought in the top leadership of the party that no faces will be replaced in the upcoming assembly polls. The party is likely to go with Vasundhara Raje in Rajasthan, Shivraj Singh Chouhan in Madhya Pradesh, Raman Singh in Chhattisgarh and Vijay Rupani in Gujarat,” the leader said.
“We have a strategy in place for the assembly polls and the preparations for 2019 (general elections) has also begun simultaneously,” the leader added.
The Prime Minister, sources said, has asked MPs to shift their focus to the 2019 general elections. He is also holding meetings with MPs, grouped according to their states, every day before Parliament begins.
The assembly polls in the four states are of great importance to the party, as BJP draws significant political might from the Hindi heartland. “Winning the assembly polls shows the mood of the people as we have seen in the recent past in UP. Having a friendly government always helps when it comes to general elections,” the party leader said.
A major concern for the BJP is also the Rajya Sabha, where it is struggling to get a majority.
The issue of projecting the face of a leader for state elections has been a crucial issue for the BJP since Narendra Modi’s victory in 2014. Most of the state elections since then have been contested with the prime minister as the party’s face, and the party highlighting the benefits of having the same party in power in the state government and at the Centre and in the state highlighted.
However, before 2014, the emphasis in state elections used to be on the state’s achievements.