The BJP on Friday appointed Defence Minister Rajnath Singh, Haryana Chief Minister Manohar Lal Khattar and Tribal Affairs Minister Arjun Munda as central observers for the election of its legislature party leaders in Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh and Chhattisgarh respectively.
The legislature party leaders will become chief ministers of the three states and the meetings to elect them may take place over the weekend. There is a view within the party that its leadership may usher in fresh faces at the helm of these states.
Singh will be joined by the party's vice president Saroj Pandey and its general secretary Vinod Tawde as central observers for Rajasthan amid an intense buzz within the BJP that the leadership will bring in a new leader, ignoring the claim of two-time former chief minister Vasundhara Raje.
The choice of Singh, one of the senior most BJP leaders, is likely to help build a consensus around the leadership's chief ministerial choice among MLAs, a number of whom are seen as supporting Raje.
Khattar will be joined by the party's OBC Morcha head K Laxman and its secretary Asha Lakra for the Madhya Pradesh legislature party meeting, while Union Minister Sarbananda Sonowal and BJP general secretary Dushwant Kumar Gautam will be central observers for Chhattisgarh along with Munda.
In Madhya Pradesh where the BJP scored its biggest victory among the three states with a two-thirds majority, current Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan's stake has gone up with the win but there is a view that the party leadership is looking at a leadership change after his 18-year uninterrupted stint in power except for 15 months after the 2018 assembly polls.
The BJP is looking to hand over the reins to an OBC or tribal leader in Chhattisgarh, sources said, adding that ST leaders like Lata Usendi, Gomati Sai and Renuka Singh are natural contenders for the top job besides state party president Arun Sao and bureaucrat-turned-politician O P Choudhary, both from backward castes.
The party will like to pick at least one woman chief minister at a time Prime Minister Narendra Modi has been highlighting women voters' support to the BJP and often speaking of the need for women-led development.
Two of three observers for Chhattisgarh are from tribal communities while Gautam comes from the Scheduled Castes.
The BJP has won the three states in the recently held assembly elections with thumping margins, brushing aside the challenge from the Congress in each of them.
Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by The Telegraph Online staff and has been published from a syndicated feed.