BJP Trying To Improve Image In Valley

30 July 2015
The Tribune (Chandigarh)
M Aamir Khan

Srinagar: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), looking to build a strong base in the Valley, will reach out to a cross-section of society to 'garner sympathy' for the party. The BJP has formed a 'strategic committee' for a better image in the Kashmir region, where it has failed to win any election so far. The party members will be imparted public relations and organisational communication training for better public dealing. 'The three-member strategic committee has been formed to reach out to intellectuals in the Valley to garner sympathy for the party,' said state BJP general secretary (organisation) Ashok Kaul. Despite fielding 34 candidates in the Valley, the BJP had failed to win any seat in the last Assembly elections in the state. Kaul chaired a core group meeting of the party, after which local party leaders Moti Kaul, Khalid Jehangir and Tariq Moulvi were named members of the strategic committee. Moti Kaul was the only BJP candidate who had saved his security deposit in the last Assembly elections. He contested from the Habbakadal seat. Jehangir is the Kashmir unit spokesman of the party. BJP media in charge Altaf Thakur said Moulvi had recently joined the party and was an ex-corporate member. Ashok Kaul said the committee was formed in view of the upcoming municipal elections, dates for which were yet to be announced. The party formed committees for different regions of the Valley for recording good performance in the municipal elections. 'State BJP vice-president GM Mir will be in charge for north Kashmir, MLC Sofi Yousuf for south Kashmir and Dr Darakshan Andrabi for Srinagar,' Kaul said. 'Khalid Jehangir will be in charge for Ganderbal district and Dr Ali Mohammad Mir for Budgam district,' Kaul further said. He said the party workers would also be given public relations classes so that they were able to deal with the public in a better manner. 'Around 150 party workers from Kashmir will be taught organisational setup and public relations during a training session next month,' he said. The BJP had claimed enrolling over 3.3 lakh members in the Valley and set a target of crossing the 5 lakh mark in the coming months.