Kerala Assembly Elections 2016

BJP to rope in celebrities

Despite an array of its senior leaders feeling miffed at being deprived of their due, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is assiduously trying to rope in celebrities to contest as National Democratic Alliance (NDA) candidates in the Assembly poll.

Party sources told The Hindu that identifying a suitable candidate for the Thiruvananthapuram constituency had become a tough proposition for the leadership.

Members of the core committee to identify candidates are understood to have approached fellow travellers and sympathisers of the party, mainly from Mollywood, to put up a fight in the constituency.

Actor Suresh Gopi and film producer G. Suresh Kumar were among those that the BJP leadership had seriously considered as candidates for this segment, but both are understood to have turned down the offer, though Mr. Suresh Gopi has expressed his willingness to be part of the campaign.

The leadership is also reported to have zeroed in on actor Kollam Thulasi and director Rajasenan to be fielded at Kundara in Kollam and Nedumangad in Thiruvananthapuram respectively. The leadership is keen on finalising the list before BJP president Amit Shah reaches the State for the final round of consultations and is hopeful of having cricketer S. Sreesanth as party candidate in Thripunithura, sources said.

But the decision to field almost all State leaders in the capital, including State president Kummanam Rajasekharan and two former presidents V. Muraleedharan and P.K. Krishnadas, has aggrieved many prominent leaders. The decision has come at a time when the party claims to have augmented its base and popularity across the State. The concentration of leaders in one district runs contrary to the notion of growing Statewide popularity which the party seeks to create, sources said.

The push for unity that the leadership claims to have created to bring back leaders who had either deserted the organisation or had fallen silent over the years is also being questioned.

Its leaders such as P.P. Mukundan and K. Raman Pillai have not been formally inducted and those like M.S. Kumar continue to remain dormant.

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Printable version | May 27, 2020 1:00:43 PM | https://www.thehindu.com/elections/kerala2016/bjp-to-rope-in-celebrities/article8387465.ece

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