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BJP begins selection process for candidates in poll-bound states, UT

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New Delhi, Feb 27, 2021-
Ahead of Assembly elections in four poll-bound states and a Union Territory beginning from March end, the BJP has kick-started its process to identify and select potential candidates.

All the party units in West Bengal, Assam, Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Puducherry have started directing their district level groups to prepare a list of potential candidates for the polls.

The party has asked observers in these states and the UT to find out and prepare a list of candidates from grassroots workers to office-bearers who have reach in the public, based on demography of the concerned constituency and its voter composition.

Popularity of candidates with higher chances of securing victory will be the focus of the party with its stress that the candidate should not be involved in any criminal activities.

The process began soon after the Election Commission on Saturday announced a detailed schedule for Assembly polls in the four states and Puducherry.

The BJP which has fully engaged in a high-stake fight in West Bengal to dislodge ruling Trinamool Congress’s Mamata Banerjee led government and trying to form its government in Assam for the second consecutive term. The party, meanwhile, has been working hard to make inroads in Tamil Nadu, and Kerala assembly.

A BJP leader said that the district unit of the party in poll-bound states will recommend names of all potential candidates from each assembly constituency falling in its area.

“All the criteria for winnability will be discussed first at district level before forwarding names of the potential candidates to state leadership,” the leader told requesting anonymity.

The selection of candidates will go through a three-layered scrutiny — district, state and national –before the final announcement of their names from particular constituencies in the states and the UT going to poll in from March 27 to April 29.

The candidates will be first shortlisted at state district level and then the list will be observed by an internal committee of senior leaders. Later, the list will be forwarded to the high command of the BJP here. The BJP’s central election committee, chaired by party chief J.P. Nadda, will then take a final call and announce the names of the candidates.

During the whole process, the feedback of workers and ground report will be paid attention while selecting the candidates.

Feedback will also be taken for the sitting MLAs of BJP especially in Assam, where party is in power since 2016 before allowing party’s re-nomination for assembly polls, another party source told.

“Local anti incumbency against sitting BJP MLAs if any will also be taken into account before finalizing his or her candidature for another term,” the source said.

Pointing out the local anti incumbency against sitting MLAs, the leader said it will be considered as an important factor in Assam where the BJP is already in power.

BJP has no MLA in Tamil Nadu and has three nominated MLAs in Puducherry Assembly. In Kerala, O. Rajagopal is the lone BJP MLA in the current state assembly.

For the West Bengal Assembly election where the BJP won only three seats for the first time in 2016, the party is learnt to consider the names of political bigwigs of other parties who recently joined themselves with the saffron party.

“Names of popular leaders with mass appeal, who joined us, will be given priority,” he said.

Recently, several senior TMC leaders including ministers joined BJP giving boost to its campaign in West Bengal. (Agency)

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