Inclusion of rival party leaders into BJP dents workers’ morale in Haryana : The Tribune India

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Inclusion of rival party leaders into BJP dents workers’ morale in Haryana

Inclusion of rival party leaders into BJP dents workers’ morale in Haryana


Tribune News Service

Geetanjali Gayatri

Chandigarh, July 8

“Imported leaders” are becoming a challenge for the BJP in Haryana with resentment brewing among workers ahead of the Assembly poll slated for October. The BJP’s decision to open its doors to leaders of other parties ahead of the elections is not going down well with its party workers who are feeling “sidelined and overlooked”.

Overshadowing us

When it comes to giving positions, ‘outsiders’ take what is rightfully ours... leaders from other parties come with their own teams, pushing us further into the shadows. BJP worker

No longer outsiders

Electability is the only criterion in ticket distribution. Once a leader from another party joins the BJP, he is no longer an outsider. We cannot shut our door to them. — Satish Punia, BJP Party Incharge

There were rumblings within the BJP when Kurukshetra MP Naveen Jindal, former Independent MLA Ranjit Chautala and AAP leader Ashok Tanwar switched to the BJP before the Lok Sabha elections and were given tickets within days of joining.

The workers are sore over the inclusion of former Congress leader from Bhiwani Kiran Choudhry and her daughter Shruti, and they apprehend that more leaders will join the part as the elections draw closer.

“The workers have been trying to strengthen the party base in the state. However, when it comes to giving positions, ‘outsiders’ take what is rightfully ours. We are a disciplined party, but leaders from other parties come with their own teams, pushing us further into the shadows. We show up at meetings for the benefit of the party, but we feel demoralised,” a worker says.

They maintain that the party ideology is being diluted with the entry of “outsiders”. “The party base is expanded if grassroots workers of other parties come into the BJP fold. If the party accepts senior leaders, they bring little to the table. They use our base to further their own interests and our workers and local leaders miss the chance to go up the party ladder,” says a leader.

However, the newly appointed party incharge for Haryana, Satish Punia, says though it is a challenge, the party has managed to strike a balance between dedicated workers and new entrants.

“Electability is the only criterion in ticket distribution and we won’t make any exceptions. Once a leader from another party joins the BJP, he is no longer an outsider. That is how the party grows. We cannot shut our door to them. We have managed to accommodate our committed workers, along with the new entrants who deserve all respect for reposing faith in the BJP. If we get any such complaints, we will address these on priority since they all belong to the BJP now,” he says, adding that CM Nayab Singh Saini had also risen from the cadre to occupy the top position in the government, indicating that the party is watching the interests of its workers and leaders.

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