Hazaribagh, Oct. 21: The ongoing bickering within the BJP in the district may prove beneficial for the Ajsu in the coming Assembly as well as Lok Sabha elections.
Veteran BJP leader and former Barkagaon MLA Loknath Mahto’s unhappiness with his party’s leadership, particularly local MP Yashwant Sinha, is apparent.
According to sources, the Ajsu is trying to woo Loknath and pitch him against BJP stalwart Sinha in the coming general elections.
Speaking to The Telegraph, Loknath, a well-known Koyri leader who had received the best MLA award in 2004, admitted his differences with the BJP leaders. But, he refused to confirm reports about his growing bonhomie with the Ajsu.
“Abhi wait kariye thoda. Itni bhi kya jaldi hai. Aage sab clear ho jayega (Wait for some time… everything will be clear soon),” he said.
However, those close to Loknath said talks were on with Ajsu chief Sudesh Mahto. “It’s a matter of a few days. After October 25, everything will be clear to all,” said a close aide of Loknath.
Banshidhar Rukhaiyar, senior BJP leader and Sinha’s district representative, said the party was not aware of his unhappiness. “I can only say that he is a senior leader of our party and everyone respects him. We will talk to him on this,” Rukhaiyar told The Telegraph.
According to sources, the Koyri community has a strong presence in the Barkagaon constituency and if Loknath shifts allegiance towards the Ajsu, the BJP will be in trouble in the coming elections.
The Ajsu has been eyeing Barkagaon for long. In 2009, Ramgarh MLA Chandra Prakash Choudhary’s brother Roshan Lal Choudhary had contested the seat on an Ajsu ticket, but came behind Congress’s Yogendra Sao and BJP’s Loknath.
Ajsu insiders revealed that the party leadership was now planning to field Loknath against Sinha in the general elections, which would pave the way for Roshan in Barkagaon Assembly constituency.
Though chances of Loknath’s win from the Hazaribagh Lok Sabha seat was very low, Ajsu would gain as he would not contest the Assembly elections and his votes in Barkagaon seat would then go to Roshan.
The state BJP leadership has been quite worried over the prevailing factionalism in the district unit, which is divided into two camps — one led by Sinha and the other headed by Yadunath Pandey.