NEW DELHI: The central leadership of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has directed the Delhi unit to make concerted efforts to cover ground in 1,200 odd booths where the party performed badly in the recently held parliamentary elections.
A Delhi BJP leader aware of the development said that following directions from party president Amit Shah, there will be special focus on about 1,200 polling booths during a membership drive to be launched on July 6. The aim is to secure at least 50 per cent votes in Assembly elections in each of these booths.
“Amit Shahji’s directions are very clear, that we need to work harder in polling booths which we lost in Lok Sabha elections, to ensure smooth victory in Assembly polls due next year irrespective of their demography. We will ensure that the party gets minimum over 50 per cent vote share in those areas. The party president has also told us to enrol minimum 100 new members in each polling booth,” said the leader. The city has about 13,800 polling booths.
The BJP retained all seven Lok Sabha seats in Delhi and its vote share increased from 46.40 per cent in 2014 to about 56. 6 per cent in the recent Lok Sabha polls. It was 35 per cent in 2009. On Monday, Shah, along with the head of the BJP’s membership drive and former Madhya Pradesh chief minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan held a meeting with newly appointed conveners and co-conveners of all state units given the responsibility for registering new members.
The co-convenor of Delhi BJP’s membership drive, Harshdeep Malhotra, said the party will launch its expansion drive on July 6, which is the birth anniversary of Syama Prasad Mukherjee, founder of Bharatiya Jana Sangh, the predecessor to the BJP.
“The seven-week-long exercise will conclude on August 31. In the first phase, primary members will be signed up, which will continue till August 11. Then, work to make active members will start. All active members require to renew their membership every three years,” said Malhotra. “People will be able to enrol themselves by giving a missed call to a dedicated number and will also file a membership form,” he said.
Big increase targeted
The BJP has set a target of registering 10 lakh new members in Delhi. The party has about 14.5 lakh members in the national capital, far less than its earlier estimate of 30 lakh.