Vaishnaw PM's favourite for CM's post in Rajasthan: Sources

by IANS |

Jaipur, Dec 7 (IANS) As the suspense over the choice of the Chief Minister in Rajasthan continues, party leaders confirmed that Union Minister Ashwini Vaishnaw is considered to be the strongest contender for the coveted post among all the other names doing the rounds.

Also, there is a major possibility that two Deputy CMs will be appointed to balance social equations.

The oath taking ceremony could be organised on December 12 in Jaipur, confirmed party sources.

Ashwini Vaishnaw is considered close to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Union Minister Amit Shah.

Technocrat Vaishnaw's management experience is considered to be good and he seems fit to balance the bureaucratic and political lobby, said sources. They added that the party is looking forward to a Brahmin face who also fits the OBC category.

Union Minister Gajendra Singh Shekhawat is also in the race and has political influence, too, but the party already has Rajput CMs in other states.

Given the social engineering that the party wants to do, Arjun Ram Meghwal’s name is yet again among the top contenders because he is the blue-eyed boy of Modi and Shah and comes from the Dalit community.

There are about 18 per cent Dalits in Rajasthan and 20 per cent in the country. The Dalits do not vote for the BJP and the party does not have a Dalit CM in any state. If it makes Arjun Ram Meghwal the CM then it can cash in on this in the Lok Sabha elections.

Also, having been a bureaucrat, Arjun Ram Meghwal also has administrative understanding. There is less possibility of Rajasthan MLAs having any objection to his name.

The other name doing the rounds is Om Mathur who, like Modi, comes from a Sangh background and is close to him. The Prime Minister has been close to Mathur since he was the Chief Minister of Gujarat.

Mathur has also been the state President of Rajasthan and incharge of Chhattisgarh elections. The chances of the BJP winning there were next to none, hence their strategy is being considered very important in this victory.

Second, making Mathur the CM will help the BJP balance the political equations of Marwar and Mewar.

Third, he comes from the Kayastha community which is accepted everywhere in Rajasthan.

Kirodi Lal Meena is yet another leader who cornered the Gehlot Government on issues like paper leak. He activated the BJP, which was weak for the last four years, by bringing up paper leak and other issues and creating problems for Gehlot. If seen on a caste basis only, he is known as ‘Baba’ in both the SC and ST communities.

Chittorgarh MP CP Joshi is yet another name doing the rounds as he was made the state President just before the Assembly elections. Joshi is associated with the Sangh and was previously the state president of the BJP Yuva Morcha.

Baba Balaknath is another contender who is being compared with the Chief Minister of Uttar Pradesh. The Nath Mathh in Rohtak is considered to be influential in Haryana, Rajasthan and surrounding areas. Hindutva fits into the card and polarisation will become easy for the BJP.

One of the other strong contenders is Diya Kumari as she is close to the central leadership. Second, she can be described as an option in place of Vasundhara Raje. Third, if the BJP plays the woman card, it will benefit the party.

The Central Government brought the Women's Reservation Bill and Diya Kumari’s appointment will give the message that the party gives importance to women.

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