As the parties exert full force in the last month ahead of the Karnataka Assembly polls, the state leadership of the Bharatiya Janata Party has asked for the maximum number of campaigns from “popular” Chief Ministers and Union Ministers, sources said on Monday.
Among those in maximum demand include Union Minister Smriti Irani, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar, Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Yogi Adityanath, Assam Chief Minister Himanta Biswa Sarma, Maharashtra Deputy Chief Minister Devendra Fadnavis.
The party is yet to release the list of star campaigners for the Karnataka Assembly polls slated on May 10.
The BJP has blown the poll bugle after the announcement of the state assembly polls recently. Last weekend Prime Minister Narendra Modi was in the state and in the crucial Mysuru region where it looks to break up the JD(S)-Congress edge, home to the electorally influential Vokkaligas.
“Karnataka is a peculiar state where the popularity of leaders varies from region to region. A leader like Yogi Adityanath will be a great appeal in the coastal Karnataka region whereas, in the Karnataka Maharashtra border districts, the party would like Devendra Fadnavis and Goa. Chief Pramod Sawant to campaign given their popularity and language connection. Himanta Biswa Sarma has come across as a leader who is acceptable to the urban and rural masses given his plain talk and his push for Hindutava,” a senior party leader told ANI.
While Prime Minister Narendra Modi continues to be the biggest face for the BJP be it Panchayat to Parliament elections, extensive campaigning by Home Minister Amit Shah and JP Nadda is also on the cards.
“While every assembly constituency would like to see a campaign from the Prime Minister but given the constraint of his being busy, there is a plan to club a few constituencies together for a PM’s program. It is pretty likely that PM Modi will hold anywhere between 15 to 20 rallies in the run-up to the election,” a senior office bearer said.
Among the Union Ministers, a few like EAM Jaishankar and Smriti Irani are also going to be in big demand.
“The foreign minister is known for his straight talk and his simplistic approach makes him hugely popular among the Urban class. The youth, in particular, is usually attracted towards him and that is the reason he continues to be an important face for the BJP to campaign in urban regions,” a member of the BJP campaign committee said.
The source further said that Smriti Irani has the role “of leader who is a grounded party worker and also appeals to the masses”.
“The distinction of being a hugely popular woman leader is also a big focus area,” sources said.
The Karnataka assembly elections are slated to take place on May 10, 2023, with the results being declared on May 13, 2023. All the 224 assembly seats will go to vote in a single phase.
This report is filed by ANI news service.