Shillong, Feb 13: The Bharatiya Janta Party is making serious efforts to spread itself in northeastern states of India on the strength of Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi's development agenda. While leader of opposition in Rajya Sabha Arun Jaitley and actress-politician Smriti Irani are addressing a rally in Meghalaya capital tomorrow (Feb 14), party chief Rajnath Singh campaigned early this week; the party has put up 50 candidates for 60 Tripura assembly seats.
Even though it has fielded only 13 candidates, the BJP's campaign in Meghalaya has been very aggressive and one of its leader accused Chief Minister Mukul Sangma of trying to enlist the help of underground elements in Garo Hills to win the upcoming elections. Speaking to local media (Shillong Times) BJP leader Kiren Rijiju said, "it is an irony that on one hand Congress was using militants to win the elections in Garo Hills, on the other the Chief Minister is claiming in the manifesto that the Congress Government will eliminate militancy."
"I have been campaigning in Garo Hills and I have received inputs from people that the militants are resorting to unfair means in support of Congress candidates", he alleged. He also tried to debunk a misinformation campaign that it is anti-Christian as BJP has fielded many Christian candidates in Meghalaya.The Assembly polls are on February 23.
The aggressiveness is seen even in Tripura where Rajnath Singh held couple of rallies and his constant theme has been Gujarat's model of development. "Gujarat has developed in such a way that it has become a role model of others. What has Congress and the CPI(M) done for Tripura in all these years," Singh asked at an election rally.
He also touched the sensitive issue of immigrants and promised to deal with illegal infiltration with an iron fist and amicable solution to problems faced by people working in tea garden. "People from across the border are sharing the resources that were actually meant for you (Indian). Whenever our Government comes to power, they (infiltrators) will be identified and their names removed from voter list," Singh said.
Arun Jaitley and Smriti Irani will address an election rally at Laban Sports ground in Shillong on February 14 at 1 pm in support for the party candidate from South Shillong Augustine Lakiang.