Kalraj Mishra Says, I Never Said Uma Bharti Is Outsider, She Cannot Become CM

Lucknow, Jan 24: BJP vice-president Kalraj Mishra today clarified that he never said Uma Bharti was an outsider, hence cannot become the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh.  PTI had in the morning circulated a news
kalraj mishra says i never said uma bharti is...
India TV News Desk 24 Jan 2012, 02:49 PM IST

Lucknow, Jan 24: BJP vice-president Kalraj Mishra today clarified that he never said Uma Bharti was an outsider, hence cannot become the chief minister of Uttar Pradesh. 

PTI had in the morning circulated a news based on an interview of Mishra, in which the BJP leader said:
“But our party President has also said that Surya Pratap Shahi is the state unit president (and hence can't hold two posts), Rajnath Singh has already said he is not in state politics now and Bharti is from outside....not from Uttar Pradesh”.

However, he hastened to add that this did not mean that “I am saying I am the chief ministerial candidate”.

Realizing the implications of his remarks, Mishra later told PTI that it was the prerogative of the party's Parlimanetary Board to decide the person for chief minister's post if the party wins the elections in UP.

Mishra, who is one of the front-runners for the chief ministership of Uttar Pradesh if some “miraculous results” give his party the mandate, said the decision on who will be CM in such a scenario will be taken by the Parliamentary Board.

He, however, maintains that the party must first strive to get the required numbers.

BJP President Nitin Gadkari had stated earlier that the party was fighting the electoral battle in Uttar Pradesh under the leadership of state unit president Surya Pratap Shahi, former party president Rajnath Singh, Kalraj Mishra and firebrand Hindutva leader Uma Bharti.

Mishra recounted that Gadkari has also pointed out that Shahi is the state unit president (and hence can't hold two posts) while Rajnath Singh has already said he is not in state politics now.

Bharti, who is from the Lodh community and rose to prominence during the Ram Janambhoomi movement, is a former Chief Minister of Madhya Pradesh.

Ever since Gadkari announced that she will contest the UP elections from Charkhari constituency of Mahoba district, speculation has been rife about her being a prospective chief ministerial candidate. Her case is also strengthened by the fact that she is an OBC leader and BJP is aggressively wooing this community.

Mishra is all-praise for Bharti and feels she has strengthened the BJP campaign in UP.

However, Mishra feels Bharti is a national leader of the party and should not be seen only in the context of UP politics. 

“Moreover, she should also not be seen just as an OBC leader. She has been a union minister in the NDA government.  She is a Sadhvi who cannot be confined to a particular state.  She is also a former chief minister of Madhya Pradesh,” Mishra said.

Though Mishra states that he is one of the four leaders under whom the party has decided to contest the polls in Uttar Pradesh, he hastens to add, “I am not saying I am the chief ministerial candidate”.

He also evaded a reply when asked if the BJP would choose a Brahmin- the community to which he belongs- as the chief minister, saying the final decision will be taken by the Parliamentary Board.

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