Modi meets Maharashtra BJP leaders; Gadkari absent

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MODIMumbai, June 27;Gujarat Chief Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday met the top brass of Maharashtra BJP to discuss strategy for next Lok Sabha elections but former party president Nitin Gadkari was conspicuous by his absence.

This is Mr. Modi’s first visit to the state after being appointment as BJP’s poll campaign committee chief.

BJP general secretary in-charge of Maharashtra Rajiv Pratap Rudy, party’s national spokesman Prakash Javadekar, BJP deputy leader in Lok Sabha Gopinath Munde, state unit president Devendra Phadanvis, Leader of Opposition in Assembly Eknath Khadse and in the council Vinod Tawde were prominent among those present during the closed door meeting.

Former party president Nitin Gadkari was, however, conspicuous by his absence.

Mr. Modi discussed the prevailing political situation in the state and the party’s organisational matters and alliance with Shiv Sena.

Before the meeting, Mr. Javadekar told reporters that Mr. Modi is reviewing the party’s poll preparedness in all the states.

He will discuss about Lok Sabha polls and formulating alliances.

“The Sena-BJP alliance has always been strong in Maharashtra. Efforts will be to win the seats in Mumbai, Pune and Marathwada which the party lost in 2009,” he said.

The core committee of the state BJP which met Mr. Modi comprises state president, vice presidents, general secretaries, treasurer, organisation secretaries, and all the Maharashtra unit leaders, including Mr. Munde and Mr. Gadkari, as invitees.

The other invitees in the core group include national treasurer and Rajya Sabha MP Piyush Goel, former MP Kirit Somaiya and former state president Sudhir Mungantiwar.

Meanwhile, Mr. Javadekar alleged that the trucks, flagged off by the AICC from Delhi on June 24 with much fanfare for Uttarakhand relief, have been stranded at Rishikesh because the drivers have not been provided with money for purchasing petrol.

“This shows the Congress’ true intention,” he said.

Mr. Javadekar also assured that they will not politicise the Uttarakhand tragedy since the rescue operations are on.

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