Amit Shah to chair BJP meetings in Telangana

New Delhi: Home Minister Amit Shah will chair BJP’s organisational meetings in Telangana on Thursday as he leads the party’s push in a slew of states, including West Bengal and Odisha, to emerge as a dominant player there in the next Lok Sabha elections.

BJP leaders said Shah will attend a meeting of the party’ core group, which includes senior leaders from the state, in Hyderabad and later interact with ‘mandal’ presidents of the party from across Telangana. He will also pay obeisance at the Bhagyalakshmi temple.

The senior BJP leader, a key strategist of the party, was in West Bengal on Tuesday along with BJP president J P Nadda as they held organisational meetings and set a target of winning 35 of the 42 Lok Sabha seats in the eastern state ruled by the Trinamool Congress. The BJP had won 18 seats in 2019.

It had won four of the 17 seats in Telangana in the 2019 polls but its hopes to emerge as a strong force received a setback in the recent assembly polls as the Congress wrested power from the Bharat Rashtra Samithi.

The BJP is hopeful that national narratives coupled with Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s appeal will help it emerge stronger in the state in the Lok Sabha elections.

Shah, sources said, is likely to travel to Odisha too in the coming days where the Biju Janata Dal (BJD) has long been the strongest force.

The BJP had, however, succeeded in denting the BJD in the 2019 Lok Sabha elections as it won eight of the state’s 21 seats. The BJD had won 12.

Assembly elections are held simultaneously with Lok Sabha polls in the state.

All the three states were identified by Shah during 2014-19, when he was the BJP president, as regions for growth for the party.