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BJP adds 23,000 new members during a drive in Kashmir Valley

Total BJP membership in Jammu and Kashmir before the Lok Sabha elections was 5,20,959

BJP

News Desk |

BJP has added over 23,000 new members in the Kashmir Valley during a drive that ended on Tuesday. The party plans to engage in several confidence-building measures in the coming weeks to increase support in the region, which has been under curfew since revocation of special status of the state.

BJP vice-president Avinash Rai Khanna, election in-charge of J&K, said BJP gained 3,50,174 new members in the state through online enrollment. Offline enrollment in areas where mobile connectivity is weak is expected to push the overall figure beyond 7 lakh. A person interested in becoming a BJP member has to give a missed call to a dedicated toll-free number. Mobile and landline services have been on the blink in the Valley since August 5.

In the last local bodies polls, 1,200 BJP candidates won Sarpanch posts in the Valley. We have 100 corporators too in the region. Welfare funds are now going directly to them

The figure will exceed the target of increasing membership in each state by at least 20%. The total BJP membership in J&K before the Lok Sabha elections was 5,20,959. The Valley has an estimated population of around 80 lakh and BJP claims to have had a membership of around one lakh before the membership drive was launched. “The figure of 23,000 is for Baramullah, Srinagar and Anantnag district,” Khanna said. This is a 25% increase in membership in the Valley. Once the security restrictions are eased, BJP hopes to gather support in other regions.

Elections in J&K may not be held soon in the wake of new developments and BJP plans to utilise the time to reach out to people in the Valley. The law to make the region a Union Territory will come into effect on October 31 but it is likely to take a much longer time for the situation to turn conducive for elections. BJP has hardly any electoral support in the Valley. It led only in the Tral assembly segment in the Lok Sabha elections.

Read more: Modi’s BJP defies Indian Constitution – Scraps Kashmir’s ‘Special Status’

Khanna said BJP will reach out to the people in the Valley by enumerating the benefits of various central schemes like Ujjwala for LPG cylinders and construction of toilets under Swachh Bharat. “In the last local bodies polls, 1,200 BJP candidates won Sarpanch posts in the Valley. We have 100 corporators too in the region. Welfare funds are now going directly to them,” Khanna said, adding the development projects will help BJP win the goodwill of the people.

Plans for two AIIMs, IIM, IIT will also be the selling points. BJP’s assessment is that it is likely to improve its electoral prospects in the coming months.

Courtesy: The Economic Times

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