By Archana Sharma
Jaipur, Jan 9 (IANS) Shocking one and all in the BJP cadre, former Rajasthan Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje’s followers have announced 25 district presidents of a solo entity ‘Team Vasundhara Raje’ floated in December 2020, and made the list viral on social media.
These developments were reported when a high-level meeting was called by the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) national president J.P. Nadda on Friday in Delhi with three senior leaders of Rajasthan — Satish Poonia, BJP state president; Gulabchand Kataria, Leader of Opposition; and Rajendra Rathore, deputy leader of opposition.
Raje, however, was not invited to the meeting.
The new development has raised several eyebrows and clearly hinted about the new political equations emerging in Rajasthan where the ‘Queen’ was silently being sidelined.
Eventually, her followers on Friday left the party workers shocked by releasing a list of newly appointed district presidents under the banner of ‘Team Vasundhara Raje’.
The letterhead of the list carried the picture of Vasundhara’s mother, Vijayaraje Scindia and quoted her as the inspiration to promote the spirit of nationalism among masses.
These stunning developments were reported at a time when the state leaders were holding a meeting in Delhi to discuss party strategy ahead of the bypolls scheduled to be held in the three districts of the state.
As said, Raje was not a part of the meeting. Since last many months, Raje’s distance and differences with senior party leaders have been a major topic of discussion in the political corridors.
In this context, BJP state president Satish Poonia said: “Vasundhara Raje’s followers have raised their teams in many districts. The central leadership is aware of this fact and we shall follow the decision taken by our party leadership in this direction.”
However, Vijay Bharadwaj, convenor of Vasundhara Raje Samarthak Rajasthan Manch who floated ‘Team Vasundhara Raje’ told IANS that the new entity was formed in December 2020 with an aim of taking the policies and projects undertaken by Raje to the people.
“I am an ideal worker of BJP. We want to work together to ensure the BJP gains power in 2023 and Raje comes back as Chief Minister,” he said.
Meanwhile, Poonia further said: “We are figuring out if the members are serious BJP workers. We shall compile a thorough report with all facts and then I will be in a position to speak in this matter. Right now, it is simply on social media so can’t ascertain the facts. Whatever direction the central leadership gives us, we shall follow it. As of now, there is no such ritual of announcing standalone teams of followers in the party.”
(Archana Sharma can be contacted at [email protected])