TODAY -

BJP President, who ?

Free Thinker *



Speculation is running high – who is going to be the next BJP President of the State ? A few days back there was a news saying that one member of the Central High Command will visit Manipur to fathom the situation and take the opinion of the local leaders, people's representatives and parivar members in order to decide the Presidentship.

The leader didn't turn up perhaps because of preoccupation in the South or in the Middle. We in the east are still waiting. The in-charge is also constantly engaged day and night by the media being the most vocal and invincible spokesperson of the Party.

We all know that the new President has to play a very crucial role in the organization; because the Party has to face the next State election within a few months. Distributing tickets, winning elections, choosing the leadership, selecting Ministers and appeasing the MLAs are going to be a hell of a job.

The organizational strength of the Party largely depends on the ability of the President. If the President is energetic, capable and fearless, the Party can do a lot of things. Even the Government works in tandem with the Party if the President is assertive.

Prof Tiken was a dedicated Party man, a simple person, very outspoken but a fine gentleman. After his sudden and sad demise in office nobody has the courage to insist the Central leadership to appoint a new President at the earliest.

Once I enquired the State Sangh leader about it– he put me under tremendous embarrassment – saying that let the 'Sorat' of Tikenji be over. I felt so bad and so embarrassed; actually my question was innocuous and inadvertent. Incidentally I had the last talk with Oja Tiken before he was hospitalized for Covid.

Conversation was about the vaccination program. We talked about vaccine hesitancy among the people. I conveyed to him that the 'Tika Utsav ' is going to be an opportunity for mass vaccination. He told me that he had already spoken to the district in-charges and Party cadres to mobilize people and convince them to come out for vaccination. When he was in JNIMS my last message to him was "Oja , praying for your speedy recovery." Sadly he didn't come back home.

The new appointee could be a Brahmin or a Kshatriya or even an Adivasi who knows ? But never underestimate the power of women too. This is politics. Every leader demonstrates his or her caliber to the maximum extent when the time demands.

Now the point is whose resume convinces the competent authority the most; that will be a deciding factor. The High command will follow the decision of the middle command. For our State from my experience it is the intermediary command who decides things; High Command normally endorses it. Unlike UP or Karnataka, the High Command fully relies on the reports of the observers and in-charge. This time I strongly feel that a person who has a comfortable relationship with the party cadre and parivar may be chosen as the leader.

Even though we are a tiny State, the politics here is highly fragile and complicated. Central leaders and politicians from other States learn many things from this place. There was one State in-charge in the recent past, a very seasoned politician; very often he got baffled dealing with the Manipur situation.

Occasionally I talked with him; he told me frankly that Manipur politics is interestingly intricate and extremely personal. The State and regional in-charge have to land here every now and then because something or the other comes up almost every month. Sometimes they become so frustrated to deal with non-issues but intriguingly explosive.

The most unfortunate part being, internal issues become open and magnified beyond control. Such things become more damaging for the organization. Damage control is another major issue.

What is the popularity quotient and what is the acceptability quotient ? A worldly-wise person with a strong head and a powerful hand is the need of the hour. Anyone from the parivar, a down to earth person with a strong ideological grounding may be inducted.

Ultimately the chosen one ought to be a very strong person who can withstand ignominy and defeats. Anybody can face victories and success but only a few can gracefully and courageously withstand losses.

Whether "A" becomes President or "B" becomes President or anyone "R" or "P" that does not matter much; what matters most is , the new incumbent must be able to deliver good for the Party. To run the organization effectively is not that easy.

To carry along the Government, the MLAs, and party and parivar leaders is a big challenge. And the most difficult part is to ensure victory in the next State election; in other words to win a good number of seats which will enable the party to form the next Government.

It is reliably learnt that the feedbacks and reports are being gathered from various sources for a final assessment. Wishing all the best to all the contenders – projected or non- projected. Patra ji will declare the result soon.


* Free Thinker wrote this article for The Sangai Express
This article was webcasted on June 24 2021.



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