After landslide poll victories in Uttar Pradesh and Uttarakhand, and forming state governments in four of the five states which went to polls recently, a beaming BJP is in no mood to sit back and relax.
High on the party's agenda is to extend the saffron surge in other parts of the country. For this, the BJP has chosen Odisha as the next stop for its "Mission 2019" and will hold its key National Executive meeting on April 14 and 15 in Bhubaneswar.
The party plans to bank on Modi's style of governance and political leadership, his pro-poor social benefits front to connect to voters just like it did in the assembly polls. BJP would also highlight international affairs and party's expansion agenda in most of the eastern coastal states, including Odisha and Bengal.
MISSION ODISHA 2019
BJP leaders from Odisha see this as a big political gain that the party will launch its "Mission Odisha for 2019" from BJP National Executive meet in the state.
Speaking to Mail Today, union minister of state for Petroleum (independent charge) Dharmendra Pradhan said: "Bhubaneshwar meet is significant as we are fortunate to host the national leadership for deciding the future course of national political action from our state."
"It also compliments our recent poll victories in state panchayat elections. Led by PM Modi and party chief Amit Shah, the mega political event will see many top central ministers, RSS leaders and chief ministers of all BJP ruled states arriving in the capital for the two-day event.''
The state BJP unit is upbeat about its recent panchayat results where it gave ruling Naveen Patnaik-ruled Biju Janata Dal (BJD) a big setback.
"While the poll victories in UP, Uttarakhand have immediate larger relevance to formulate a blueprint to sustain governance in these new states under the BJP belt, the spotlight also comes on Odisha, which will be going to polls along with 2019 general elections. As the top leadership discusses plans to strengthen its political influence over the country, Odisha becomes a natural talking point in that political game-plan.'' Pradhan said.
He says that Modi's governance for poor has also shown results in Odisha panchayat polls.
Of the 853 panchayat seats, BJP grabbed 297 as against 37 in the last elections. The ruling BJD got 473 as against 650 last time, as almost 250 seats went the BJP way. "The recent Odisha panchayat results have signaled the change… even BJD-led tribal districts and CM Patnaik's own constituency has started shifting loyalties to BJP and all this has been made possible due to Modi's style of 'welfare governance'," said Pradhan, adding, "Be it Ujjwala, Jan Dhan and other pro-poor schemes under direct benefits transfers, these helped us gain foothold in BJD ruled areas.'' Pradhan said.
Interestingly, BJP's growing surge within the coastal state is attributed to the growth of communication tools and information sharing through mobile, TV and travel of locals to different states for work.
"In Patnaik's Ganjam district, there are a lot of people who travel frequently to Gujarat and they have seen the development there. Narratives have started changing due to this,'' he added.Also Read