The BJP held a four-hour meeting in Delhi today to discuss next year’s assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh. According to sources, the main question of the meeting could be the possible outcome of last week’s incidents in Lakhimpur Kheri, where four farmers were killed in October – allegedly by Ashish Mishra, son of Union Minister Ajay Mishra.
Ajay Mishra, the junior home minister in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s government, did not resign despite nationwide outrage and opposition demands.
According to sources, there is no possibility of resignation at the moment. In a meeting with his boss, Union Home Minister Amit Shah, last week, Mr Mishra said he or his son were not at the scene. Sources indicated that a new overview could be taken based on the results of the investigation if necessary.
Although the party still has to think ahead and sources said the important question of his resignation could be discussed at the meeting, it was attended by party secretary BL Santosh, UP in-charge Radha Mohan Singh, election in-charge Dharmendra Pradhan, UP BJP president Swadhinata Dev and state BJP organizing secretary Sunil. Bansal and team leader JP Nadda.
The death of Ashish Mishra in his arrest, and the weak response of the state police have angered the farmers.
For the party, the choice is between isolated peasants or Brahmins, who make up 11 per cent of the state’s population and are upset with the BJP.
Mr Mr, belonging to the mixed Brahmin community, who, though small in number, has significant political significance considering the huge role of caste in state elections, is seen as the gateway to Delhi.
When the BJP’s main seat in the state, the Dalit votebank, gained momentum, the Brahmins became deeply enraged by electing Yogi Adityanath – a Rajput – to the top post.
Supporting the chief minister in the second term, the BJP, for the past few months, has been trying hard to get the community side back.
In June, the party returned to its original constituency after winning the Congress’ Jitin Prasada.
It also tried a similar move in 2016 – to include Rita Bahugun Joshi, daughter of former Uttar Pradesh Chief Minister Hembati Nandan Bahugun, as another Brahmin face in the Congress.
But that attempt failed because no masses followed in the kingdom of Bahushunya-Joshi. Jitin Prasad is also suffering from similar obstacles.
By comparison, Ajay Mishra has considerable influence in the Terai area and he is a muscular person.