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Where is Amit Shah?

LiveMint logoLiveMint 11-05-2017 Gyan Varma

New Delhi: In one of his most ambitious nationwide tours for the promotion of Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) ideology and possible electoral victory in the 2019 general elections, party president Amit Shah is travelling one lakh kilometres in 95 days over five months.

Shah’s travel plans have been divided into two sections, the first is the Deen Dayal Vistarak Yojana in which the BJP president will travel to five states and will spend at least three days in each. These are West Bengal, Odisha, Telangana, Lakshadweep and poll-bound Gujarat which will witness assembly polls in December.

The ambitious nationwide tour plan is to prepare the BJP organisation before the Lok Sabha elections, especially in states where the party did not perform well in the 2014 general elections. Apart from the five states under Deen Dayal Vistarak Yojana, the remaining state visits of Amit Shah have been divided into three categories. The first is category A states where Shah will spend at least three days, the category B is for states where he will spend two days and category C are the smaller states where he will only spend a day.

Among the states that Shah has already visited are Tripura, Jammu and Kashmir, West Bengal and Himachal Pradesh, and is slated to visit Kerala and Tamil Nadu next. Although Shah was supposed to visit Tamil Nadu in May but the plan got cancelled.

“The visits are basically to review the performance of the party organisation, feedback about the National Democratic Alliance (NDA), strengthening the network of party till polling booth level and also to find out the areas where BJP needs to improve,” said a senior BJP leader, requesting anonymity.

Apart from the nationwide tour of Amit Shah, BJP is also in the process of identifying 600 full-time workers who will be given charge of Lok Sabha constituencies till 2019 general elections. “Out of the 600 full-time workers, the plan is to appoint one full-time worker for each of the 543 Lok Sabha constituencies, the remaining full-time workers will be used to monitor the Lok Sabha seats where the party is weak,” the BJP leader added.

BJP leaders have identified 164 Lok Sabha seats where the party needs to improve its organisational strength. The 164 Lok Sabha seats identified by the BJP are in the states of West Bengal (42), Tamil Nadu (39), Andhra Pradesh (25), Odisha (21), Kerala (20) and Telangana (17). The seats are important because BJP could only manage to win seven of these seats in the 2014 general elections.

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