Says from now on, only one group in BJP

Says from now on, only one group in BJP

Newly elected city BJP chief Arun Sood with MP Kirron Kher at the party office in Chandigarh on Friday. Photo: RAVI KUMAR

Sandeep Rana
Tribune News Service
Chandigarh, January 17

Councillor Arun Sood, who replaced Sanjay Tandon as the city BJP president today, said from now on, there would be only one group in the party i.e. the BJP.

The city unit of the party is at present said to be divided into three groups, which are led by Tandon, MP Kirron Kher and former MP Satya Pal Jain.

The former Mayor also warned those indulging in indiscipline of strict action by the party. In an interview, the youngest president of the city BJP said for him, the 2021 MC elections would be a major challenge. He also spoke about his plans and other issues facing the party.

What are the challenges you see ahead as the city BJP chief?

For now, the first challenge is the 2021 MC poll. We won the last 2016 elections by a landslide. It will be a challenge to maintain that kind of lead.

What are your priorities in your new role?

I want to increase the membership of the party. I would like to ensure that elected representatives of the public have a lot more say in the decision-making process. I have seen in the MC that decisions taken by the bureaucracy are not in sync with the aspirations of the public. Other than your MP, councillors are the only elected voice here. There is a need to strengthen democracy in the city.

How are you going to address the grave issue of factionalism in the city BJP?

Differences develop even in a family. The BJP is like our mother. It loves us, makes us understand problems with patience, chides, guides or even punishes us as per the situation. I will take everyone along. But yes, if anyone is working against the party or shows indiscipline, strict action will be taken against that person.

How will you fill this chasm in the city unit?

From now on, there will be only one group — the BJP. I mean it, it is not a slogan. But some people are in the habit of creating indiscipline. Our party gives such persons a long rope, but ultimately the person is held responsible for his or her actions.

Will you be bringing in your own organsational team?

It is not that I will change the entire team. As per our party, some people will be given a role in the state or national teams, while some will be shifted to new assignments as per their strengths. I will have a mix of old and young guns in my team.

How and why did you join the BJP?

When I was in school, I saw 21 RSS workers being gunned down by terrorists at a shakha at my native place (Moga). One of them was my schoolmate, Aman, who had studied with me from Class I to V. Their blood had mixed with sand and had turned muddy. Despite the carnage in the morning, the regular shakha was held in the evening that day. I realised these people are patriotic as they can give away their lives for the nation. This inspired me to join the RSS. I joined the Punjab unit of the BJP in 2000.

Your future in the party?

I will, for now, focus on both my responsibilities — that of a councillor and as the city BJP president. I will leave it to the high command to decide my future role and whether it wants me to contest the 2021 MC elections or not.

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