In a move seen as an attempt to balance political equations ahead of the upcoming assembly elections in Rajasthan, the BJP has named Lok Sabha MP CP Joshi as its new party president in the state. The appointment of a Brahmin face is believed to be an attempt to appeal to his community, a crucial vote base, and take the middle path between the two major castes in Rajasthan, the Rajputs and Jats, who are often at different ends of the political spectrum.
A two-time MP from the Chittorgarh Lok Sabha seat, the 47-year-old is a low-profile politician who won the last Lok Sabha election with the highest number of votes in Rajasthan. He is not aligned with any faction in the Rajasthan BJP and is expected to be non-partisan. He replaces Satish Poonia, an MLA from Jaipur's Amber constituency, who was not known to be on the best of terms with former Chief Minister Vasundhara Raje, the BJP's biggest crowd-puller in Rajasthan.
Assembly polls are due to be held in Rajasthan later this year, and the BJP's appointment of new state presidents is seen as an attempt to boost its prospects in the state. The term of the previous state presidents had already ended, and the BJP leadership is hoping that the new faces will bring fresh energy and ideas to the party in the run-up to the polls.
The BJP has also named new state presidents in Bihar, Odisha, and Delhi, with an eye on the upcoming elections. Other backward class leader and legislative council member Samrat Choudhary has been appointed as the head of the party's Bihar unit, while Manmohan Samal, a former state minister, will lead the party in Odisha. Virendra Sachdeva, Delhi working president, has been elevated as the party's chief in the capital.
Mr Choudhary, 54, whose standing within the BJP has steadily risen after joining the party in 2018, comes from the politically important Kushwaha community. He replaces Lok Sabha MP Sanjay Jaiswal at the helm of the Bihar BJP