HYDERABAD: The BJP has its tail up in Telangana as it repeatedly exudes the confidence that it is all set to dethrone Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao. But several long-time party workers and leaders are aghast at the apparent jockeying for future positions – if the BJP comes to power– that appears to have caused rifts that refuse to be bridged between several top leaders.

“No one really knows what is happening,” a party leader confided on Friday.

It was this situation that led Union minister Amit Shah — who is reported to have taken upon himself a victory for the BJP in the next Telangana Assembly elections — to give a dressing down of sorts to the party leaders at a meeting in New Delhi on February 28.

Shah’s brief was clear, work together, make the BJP’s ‘Mission 90’ – winning 90 of the 119 seats in the state Assembly — a reality. According to party sources, he also made it clear that if the state party leaders are not able to get going on this task, then he would take the necessary measures to ensure that BJP stays on a path to victory in the state.

But that doesn’t seem to have worked, the party leader said. “At least there is no visible evidence yet of any results as a consequence of Shah expressing displeasure in the Delhi meeting,” the leader explained.

The struggle, according to multiple party sources, is that there is a clear divide between the ‘ideologicals’, and the ‘politicals’ in the party. Leaders including Union minister G. Kishan Reddy, state BJP chief Bandi Sanjay Kumar, Dr K. Laxman, N. Indrasena Reddy and P. Muralidhar Rao grew up in the party along with several others. The second group is leaders who came into the BJP for various reasons, a crop of leaders that is clearly not accustomed to the BJP’s principle of organisation and collective goals first, the sources said.

Making the task of unity that much harder, the sources said, were apparent differences between individuals in both groups that have become sore sticking points that might ultimately affect the BJP’s prospects in the coming Assembly elections in the state.


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