Appointments to key posts spark buzz over rejig in BJP state unit

AS THE BJP’s Uttar Pradesh unit is gearing up for the 2024 Lok Sabha polls, fresh appointments to two of its top posts — state president and general secretary (organisation) — are likely to set the tone for a rejig in the state executive team.

On Thursday, Bhupendra Singh Chaudhary, who is also the state Minister for Panchayati Raj, was appointed as the president of the BJP’s Uttar Pradesh unit. He would be replacing Swatantra Dev Singh who was sworn-in as a minister in the Yogi Adityanath cabinet following the BJP’s win in the 2022 Assembly polls. The move comes in the wake of BJP’s “one man-one post” policy.

Chaudhary is likely to resign as a minister soon after taking charge as the BJP state president. Earlier this month, the party had appointed Dharampal Singh as the new state general secretary (organisation). He replaced Sunil Bansal, who was elevated to the post of national general secretary after a stint as the BJP UP unit’s general secretary (organisation).

Party workers said Bansal has been credited with forming a dedicated team of party workers to plan and monitor organisational activities across the state from the state headquarters.

Sources said the same policy could also lead to a few organisational appointments to replace four ministers – Daya Shankar Singh and Arvind Kumar Sharma (both BJP state vice-presidents), JPS Rathore (general secretary) and Narendra Kashyap (OBC Morcha state president). The new state president is likely to reach the state capital on Monday.

“When the state president forms a new state team, he usually inducts new faces on at least 30 per cent positions. Other office-bearers are either elevated in the team or are dropped. But as the urban local body elections are likely to be held later this year, the new state president may form his team only after the local body polls. Also, he will form the team after consultation with CM Yogi Adityanath and new general secretary (organisation) Dharampal Singh,” said a party functionary.

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Party sources said that there might be no changes even in Dharampal Singh’s team given its extensive experience in poll management and the timing of the local body elections.

BJP spokesperson Rakesh Tripathi said, “Organisational changes in the BJP are routine exercises that give a new energy to party workers. BJP is not like other parties who form organisational teams only before elections and disband them after the polls are over.”