BJP’s Call to Action in Pathanamthitta: Anil Antony’s Inclusion and PC George’s Caution

Central Leadership Mediation Amidst Intra-Party Tensions

Pathanamthitta: BJP national leadership has urged P.C. George to actively campaign for Anil Antony, their candidate from Pathanamthitta constituency. PC George’s rift in Pathanamthitta, central leadership has made it clear there should be no pressure tactics or negative campaigning against Anil Antony.

Efforts to Persuade George

Anil Antony will also meet with P.C. George in person on Monday at 5 pm to persuade him. This comes after Tushar Vellappally met BJP brass in Delhi to express displeasure over George’s statements, though he, too, was instructed not to criticize George publicly.

The central leadership believes no one should indulge in pressure tactics or advertising bans related to the elections. George told the media that his not contesting from Pathanamthitta would be a crisis for the BJP across Kerala. He claimed the decision affected BJP’s potential vote share if he was the candidate.

The state BJP leadership was upset by George’s comment that the party would back whichever “Kutichul” (Christian) candidate was fielded. They informed the central leaders, necessitating their intervention. The state unit feels George’s remarks will backfire in Pathanamthitta, Kottayam, Idukki, and Ernakulam constituencies by insulting Anil Antony.

Since George joined the BJP at the central leadership’s behest, they had to step in to prevent another leader from mocking their candidate. The consensus is it’s wrong for a BJP leader to make fun of their candidate.

Meanwhile, the “PC Olympics” continue. But the national leadership hopes Anil Antony’s Pathanamthitta visit will smooth things over. Antony aims to garner support across communities, including Christians. He earlier stated BJP would surpass its previous tally with George’s backing for his victory. However, George’s stance risks splitting the Christian vote bank.

Coupled with this, the state leadership worries about losing support from the influential NSS group. With three Christian candidates in the fray at Pathanamthitta, the BJP is working to consolidate all sections behind Anil Antony.

Challenges and Strategies for BJP’s Pathanamthitta Campaign

The BJP’s central leadership has its work cut out in resolving internal disputes ahead of the Pathanamthitta polls. While Anil Antony aims to broaden his appeal across communities, the intra-party bickering between P.C. George and state leaders risks undermining that outreach. Anil Antony’s ability to unite the Christian vote bank behind him remains determined, with George’s stance potentially fragmenting that crucial demographic. Losing the support of influential groups like the NSS would further jeopardize BJP’s chances.

Neutralizing George’s divisive comments and preventing further potshots from other leaders like Vellappally is paramount for the national leadership. Otherwise, their candidate’s chances could be severely dented in Pathanamthitta and ripples felt across nearby constituencies. All eyes are now on Antony’s meeting with the mercurial George to see if he can secure the veteran’s full-throated endorsement. If that is the case, the central leadership may need to explore more heavy-handed interventions to enforce discipline and unity ahead of polling day. Either way, dousing the “PC Olympics” media circus is critical for the BJP to avoid self-inflicted wounds and make its best push yet in this Christian heartland.

Rohit Sharma

Rohit Sharma is a seasoned Political Journalist with a deep passion for Indian Politics. With over a decade of experience in the field, he has established himself as a trusted… More »

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