Ahead of the Lok Sabha elections in 2024, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has appointed new chiefs to its state units in Bihar, Delhi, Rajasthan and Odisha on Thursday.
BJP President J P Nadda appointed Manmohan Samal, a former state minister, as the head of the party's Odisha unit, while Delhi working president Virendra Sachdeva was elevated as its chief. Lok Sabha MP C P Joshi was named as the president in Rajasthan and OBC leader and MLC Samrat Choudhary in Bihar.
BJP national president JP Nadda appointed CP Joshi as party State President of Rajasthan, Manmohan Samal as Odisha's party State President and Virendra Sachdeva as Delhi BJP State President. pic.twitter.com/LtfxGD6bw8— ANI (@ANI) March 23, 2023
Choudhary (54), whose standing within the BJP has steadily risen after joining the party in 2018, is the leader of the party in the Bihar legislative council and comes from the politically important Kushwaha community. He replaces Lok Sabha MP Sanjay Jaiswal at the helm of the Bihar BJP.
Samrat Chowdhary has been made the President of Bihar BJP. pic.twitter.com/MKBul0RSe9— ANI (@ANI) March 23, 2023
Joshi (47) will replace Satish Poonia, an MLA from Jaipur's Amber constituency, and comes close on the heels of veteran Rajasthan BJP leader Gulab Chand Kataria being eased out of active politics following his appointment as Assam governor. A Brahmin face, Joshi is a second time MP from Chittorgarh Lok Sabha seat.
Like Kataria, Poonia, too, did not have the best of equations with former chief minister Vasundhara Raje who remains the BJP's most formidable leader in the state. The party's central leadership has had its reservations with her but there have been indications that equations have improved between them. Assembly polls will be held in the Congress-ruled state later this year. BJP sources noted that the term of the state presidents had got over.
Samal, a former MP, is one of the better known BJP faces from Odisha and is seen to bring more heft than his predecessor Samir Mohanty, political watchers said. He is aggressive and his politics bears a distinct Hindutva mark, they added. He had headed the state BJP earlier as well.
Shortly after his appointment, Samal asserted that a BJP government will be installed in the state “with the help of people” after the 2024 elections.
Assembly elections are due in Odisha simultaneously with the Lok Sabha polls in 2024.
“I thank Prime Minister Narendra Modi, BJP president J P Nadda and Union Home Minister Amit Shah for reposing trust in me. Our team will ensure that the BJP is in the power after 2024 elections,” Samal, also a former state president of BJP, told reporters. The next election will be fought by the people and bring the BJP government to power, he said.
BJP sources said Sachdeva has been impressive in his short stint at the party's Delhi working president following the removal of Adesh Gupta from the helm. He is low-key and out and out organisational person who has been able to infuse a sense of cohesion in the state unit often pulled in different directions by local heavyweights, they added.
(With inputs from PTI)