With apparently no challengers for the post, Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s right hand man Amit Shah is all set to be re-elected as BJP president, the process for election to the top party post has got underway in the capital following issuance of notification of the poll schedule. Nominations for the post of party president would be accepted on 24 January and scrutiny will take place the same day. The election, if required, would be held on 25 January.
Shah’s tenure at the helm of the party is ending on 23 January and he is likely to be re-elected unopposed according to media reports. If re-elected, this would be the first full tenure for Shah as he is now completing the remnant of the three-year term of Rajnath Singh, who left the post after joining the Union Cabinet. Shah took over as the BJP President on 9 July, 2014.
“The nominations for the election to the post of BJP President would be accepted on 24 January between 10 AM and 1 PM at the party headquarters on Ashok Road. The scrutiny and withdrawal of nominations would take place between 1 PM and 1:30 PM and, if necessary, the election will be held on 25 January between 10 AM and 2 PM,” Returning Officer for the election Avinash Rai Khanna said.
As per the BJP constitution, which was amended in 2013 during Nitin Gadkari’s tenure, a person can be elected BJP President for two terms. The party president’s election in BJP is normally unopposed. Last time senior party leader Yashwant Sinha had expressed his willingness to contest but later decided against it.
Shah starts his new innings at a rather crucial time when BJP and he are recovering from the rout in Bihar. That is not all he faces sterner tests ahead too with polls scheduled in Kerala, Assam and West Bengal in the coming months. Besides the election reverses and the polls ahead ,the party is facing flak over its Hindutva agenda, its attempt to ignite the contentious Ram temple issue and others prickly issues. Shah in a sense has his tasks cut out.