Special Correspondent

NEW DELHI: Bharatiya Janata Party General Secretary Arun Jaitley has been given charge of the Gujarat assembly elections scheduled later this year.

In the party it is seen as a clear signal that the central leadership will in no way annoy Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi in the run-up to the Assembly polls despite the growing number of party legislators in Gujarat joining the dissidents.

Even before Party President Rajnath Singh’s announcement here on Friday that Mr. Jaitley will be put in charge of Gujarat elections, senior party leaders were saying that nothing would be done against the wishes of Mr. Modi although earlier Mr. Singh had dropped Mr. Modi from the party’s highest decision making body, the Parliamentary Board.

The important position of heading the BJP’s foreign affairs committee for the neighbouring countries has gone to former External Affairs Minister Yashwant Sinha, while the party committee on economic affairs will be led by Murli Manohar Joshi.

Neither Mr. Sinha nor Mr. Joshi are members of the powerful Advani camp in the party.