SRINAGAR: The top brass of BJP, including Prime Minister Narendra Modi, is visiting Kashmir Valley in the coming weeks for electioneering ahead of the five-phase assembly polls beginning November 25.
Responding to the suggestion made by its Kashmir cadres, the ruling party of India has decided to send its high-profile leaders to the Valley to hold at least two “mega-rallies” in the summer capital Srinagar.
“It is already decided that one of the rallies will be held in Srinagar by Modi Ji along with some other top leaders of the party. The other rally is likely to be held by Arun Jaitley and Mukhtar Abbas Naqvi,” Kashmir-based spokesperson of the party Altaf Thakur told Kashmir Reader Sunday.
“The request for the rallies came from Kashmir,” he added.
To decide on the final dates of the rallies and the list of candidates, the BJP was scheduled to hold a meeting in New Delhi late Sunday evening, according to Thakur.
“The parliamentary board meeting has been called in Delhi;, Shamsir Singh Manhas from J&K is participating in it. The meeting will decide the list of the candidates as well as the dates of the rallies, and we will make the same public in the coming days,” Thakur said.
With its vote bank limited to Hindu-dominated Jammu region, the BJP has always been an insignificant player in the state’s politics. But post its spectacular performance in Jammu in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections—it defeated Congress, its principal rival in the region—the saffron party has become proactive in the state. Accordingly, it is for the first time fielding candidates on all the 87 Assembly seats.
The strength in BJP’s position within the state is being acknowledged by its political competitors too. The PDP, a major political party in the Valley, has openly stated that BJP will be its major opponent in the upcoming elections.
And BJP, by asking Modi to rally in Srinagar, is revealing its intentions.