Friday, February 13, 2009

MP Digest January

As with other states, MadhyaPradesh too has started to feel the effects of the forthcoming Lok Sabha elections as both the ruling BJP and the opposition Congress have started to galvanize their supporters to visit the electorates and woo them.

The results of the recently concluded state assembly elections have come as a booster for the ruling BJP, as a result of which many of the central leaders of the party who were searching for a safe seat have now turned their attention towards Madhya Pradesh.

Prominent leaders including Sushma Swaraj and Smriti Irani have been vying for a seat from Madhya Pradesh. The party high command in New Delhi is also facing lots of resistance against name of some sitting MPs due to inner discontent. Those leaders who created hurdles for their own party members during the assembly election are now themselves facing the heat now.

MP from Indore Sumitra Mahajan is facing inner revolt from one of her party colleague and Minister Kailash Vijawargiya who commands a strong hold in Indore. During the recent assembly election, Mahajan and Vijaywargiya were engaged in bitter feud over whose supporter will get the tickets.

In between all the political games, Shivraj Singh Chauhan has not lost his focus and is working on selling his image of a “Development” intensive leader. He has roped in management gurus to teach good governance to ministers and bureaucrats.

Chauhan has also decided to train his cabinet colleagues and officers in good governance. He may be taking a leaf out of Bihar Chief Minister, Nitish Kumar’s book, who too had invited management experts to teach the ministers and officers.

Chauhan held a three-days training camp for his ministers at the tourist spot, Panchmarhi, where management experts taught them lessons in good governance. He has decided to arrange similar training camps for the Babus next month.

Shivraj Singh Chauhan, has also engaged himself in mobilizing support of the unorganized sector in the state. He is regularly inviting members of these sectors at his CM bungalow on Shyama Hills and telling them about the different welfare schemes for them.

Last week, he called over 2500 rickshaw pullers and vegetable vendors of the streets to his house on lunch and asked them to take advantage of the different schemes of the state government . He announced Rs 800 subsidy for purchasing their own rickshaw and trolleys. Chauhan showed his skill by pulling rickshaws outside the CM house too.

Unlike his predecessors, Babulal Gaur or Ms Uma Bharti,Chauhan is keeping himself projected as good administrator and also a smart politicians, which he proved by getting the BJP re-elected for the second term in the December assembly elections.

He got the vice-chancellor of Bhopal's Barkatullah university, Bhupal Singh, a retired IAS sacked by the chancellor as the VC was facing several charges of corruption. Ravindra Jain,a professor succeeded him.

Chauhan who had earned a bad name during the infancy stage of his chief minister-ship two years back because of murder of a professor of Ujjan by the Vidhyarthi Parishad activists, has repeatedly sent out a message that he wants to keep the campus clean.

Some BJP leaders of the state who were trying to bring back former Union minister Prahlad Patel back into the party fold so as to use his stature in the Mahakaushal region of the state where asked to keep low as after many leaders of the party from the Mahakaushal region revolted. Patel had left BJP when Uma Bharti launched her own party. Later he was removed by Uma Bharti for not following her directions.

Congress on the other hand as is trying to reach out to the minorities by inducting former parliamentarian Aslam Sher Khan in the state Congress body as Vice President. Besides Aslam, several other local Muslim leaders have also been inducted in the state body. Post assembly elections postmortem revealed that the minority class had deserted Congress and this has led to a stronger thrust towards this section.

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