BJP\'s national executive comes to Hyderabad on July 2
The last time the BJP held its national executive in the city was in January of 2004
HYDERABAD: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) will put an official stamp on its intention to wrest Telangana from the Telangana Rashtra Samiti (TRS) with the former set to hold an all-important party national executive meeting in the first week of July in Hyderabad.
The last time the BJP held its national executive in the city was in January of 2004, when Atal Bihari Vajpayee was the Prime Minister of the country.
The decision to hold the meeting in Hyderabad was taken on Wednesday, at a meeting of the party leaders including the state party in-charge Tarun Chugh, national general secretary B.L. Santosh and senior state BJP leaders.
With Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Union home minister Amit Shah, defence minister Rajnath Singh, finance minister Nirmala Sitharaman, along with a majority of the Union Cabinet, 18 chief ministers from BJP-ruled states, and the BJP national executive attending the proposed meeting, it is expected to generate a lot of political heat in Telangana.
The BJP’s national executive meet in the city, the party’s biggest annual event, just one year before the scheduled Assembly elections in Telangana, is expected to exert enormous pressure on the ruling TRS as selection of Hyderabad as the venue, already under pressure from the BJP on various issues.
“The TRS will know how it is to bear the full weight of the BJP leaning on it,” a party leader who attended Wednesday’s meeting told Deccan Chronicle. “There can be no greater signal that the BJP now means business in Telangana,” the party leader said.
Among the reasons that made Hyderabad a quick pick by the BJP for its national executive meet, is the strong feeling in the party’s top echelons that the TRS deliberately insulted and snubbed Prime Minister Narendra Modi on May 26, when Chief Minister K. Chandrashekar Rao left for Bengaluru the same morning, and returned to the city, soon after Modi left for Chennai after completing his engagements in Hyderabad.
“There is a feeling in the party leadership that enough is enough and it is time for the BJP to seriously kick start, once and for all, its plan to get the state rid of the TRS,” another BJP leader said. Though the TRS had described Chandrashekar Rao’s absence from the city on May 26 as a result of a previously scheduled appointment in Bengaluru with former prime minister HD Deve Gowda, there are no takers for this explanation in the BJP. The BJP sees the episode as a deliberate snub and breach of protocol during a Prime Minister’s visit by the Telangana Chief Minister, who otherwise, would have had to receive Modi at the airport on his arrival.
Sources in the BJP here said Modi was, in fact, not scheduled to address any gathering on his May 26 visit, save for his previously scheduled graduation address at the Indian School of Business. But after it became clear that the Chief Minister was leaving town for the day, swift decisions were taken, among which was an early arrival to Hyderabad by Modi.
That was one of the primary reasons why the Prime Minister reached the city about 40 minutes ahead of his scheduled arrival. This was to accommodate time for a quick, hard-hitting speech to party leaders and cadres at the Begumpet airport, a senior BJP leader told this newspaper.
And in his speech, Modi launched a scathing attack on ‘family rule’ in the state and left no one in doubt that the BJP was gunning for the TRS.
The national executive meeting in the city, meanwhile, will have the state BJP president Bandi Sanjay Kumar alter his plans for the third leg of the Praja Sangrama Yatra that was previously scheduled from June 23 to July 12. Revised dates for Sanjay’s walkathon will be announced later.
Meanwhile, Dubbak MLA M. Raghunandan Rao, during a brief chat with reporters at the party office, said that some venues were inspected for the national executive meeting. He said the meeting will be held in ‘Bhagyanagar’ and will have all the top party leaders attending it.
In TRS-ruled Telangana, the BJP is trying to emerge as a credible opponent to the K. Chandrasekhar Rao-led party, which will be seeking a third term during the Assembly polls scheduled by the end of next year. The TRS chief is also trying to build a non-BJP non-Congress front for the 2024 Lok Sabha polls. The meeting is coming at the time when the party is preparing for Assembly polls in states like Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh, Karnataka, Rajasthan and Madhya Pradesh. The last executive meeting was held in 2021, ahead of the Assembly polls in UP, Punjab, Uttarakhand, Goa and Manipur.