By Pragya Kaushika
New Delhi [India], June 15 (ANI): With Punjab state assembly polls slated for the next year, Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Tuesday began brainstorming on possible alliances and earmarking segments to be targeted by the party in the poll-bound state.
The party is contesting the polls without the backing of Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), its long-term ally of around 23 years.
The BJP Punjab president Ashwani Sharma, along with the state in-charge Dushyant Gautam, is scheduled to meet the party's national chief JP Nadda this evening. According to sources the discussion is expected to dwell on new political alliances and equations in Punjab.
With SAD stitching an alliance with Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP), the BJP is looking at the changed caste and political equations in the state which has 117 assembly constituencies.
"Dalit votes have not gone to the BSP en masse. In 2017, it contested on 111 seats and had lost all of them. The population of Dalits in the state is 32 per cent and yet the party failed to make its mark. It is one segment that we can woo voters with our central schemes meant for the community," stated a senior BJP leader.
Sources stated that the Congress-led Captain Amarinder Singh government getting mired in serious allegations of corruption, especially of COVID vaccines, by his own party members has given ammunition to both BJP and SAD ahead of polls.
In 2017, the BJP contested on 23 seats in alliance with the SAD and had won only three. This time, it is going alone in the polls. However, alliance with aggrieved leaders in the Opposition has not been ruled out yet.
Party leaders said that today's meeting is crucial as it will decide on the direction, the BJP would work to ensure good performance in the upcoming polls. (ANI)