New Delhi: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS) have concluded their electoral surveys for deciding the candidatures of claimants for the upcoming 2019 general elections.

According to highly placed sources in the party and the Sangh, while the BJP has conducted three surveys for deciding candidatures, the RSS has concluded a survey and an organisational report from all the Lok Sabha constituencies.

It is primarily on the basis of these surveys that the party would decide the list of final candidates for the upcoming polls.

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The party’s survey has been conducted under the aegis of president Amit Shah and, according to sources, outside professional agencies were employed for this purpose.
Party insiders believe that a large number of candidates from the last Lok Sabha would be losing their candidacy this time. The estimated figure could be as high as over 40%.

The party’s surveys have taken into consideration such factors as the performance of the sitting MPs in their constituencies and the extent to which they have been able to further the party’s agenda in the past five years.

The crucial question sitting MPs were asked was why the party should repeat them this time again. The new claimants were asked to prove what novelty they could bring to the table for the BJP and on what grounds they thought the sitting MP did not deserve to be repeated by the party.
“This time the BJP is in a better position to give Lok Sabha tickets to candidates from their own cadre. Last time around, a lot of turncoats had been fielded by the party. This time, the party is well poised under Prime Minister Narendra Modi, given the upsurge of nationalism among the electorate. A lot of turncoats from the last time could end up being dropped by the party,” said a senior BJP functionary.

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 “Last time, a number of allies had to be accommodated, such as RLSP and Jitan Ram Manjhi’s HAM etc. This time, the BJP has made clear that it is comfortable only with the bigger allies with whom the party has been quite accommodating. The smaller parties have been shown the door,” the functionary added.
Meanwhile, those who had strayed from the party line, even in the least, in the current tenure of the BJP, ran a high risk of being dropped.

For example, several sitting MPs in Jharkhand have been raising voices of protest and thus posturing, though on social media, against the party’s seat-sharing formula in Jharkhand so as to pre-empt any intentions of the party leadership to drop them this time.

Meanwhile, the RSS conducted its own survey across Lok Sabha constituencies in the country. Moreover, it also called for an organisational report card of each sitting MP and their potential challengers. For the latter, the vibhag pracharaks have been charged. 

According to party sources, the party has also sent into crucial Lok Sabha segments independent BJP activists to collect reports from the ground.

All such information, as also the diverse surveys, facilitate cross-verification of facts by the party.