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Newly Elected MLAs In Rajasthan BJP To Hold Meeting Today To Elect Chief Minister

After days of conjecture over the chief minister, the newly elected MLAs of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) in Rajasthan are scheduled to meet on Tuesday and are expected to select the leader of the legislative party.

Party sources who are aware of the specifics say that defence minister Rajnath Singh, who has been designated as an observer by the party, along with Vinod Tawde and Saroj Pande, two co-observers, will arrive on Tuesday morning for the gathering, which is scheduled to begin at 4 p.m. at the party office.

“The BJP state office has announced that the BJP Legislature Party would meet on Tuesday at 4 p.m. At 1:30 pm, the freshly elected BJP MLAs will begin to register”, according to MLA and state general secretary Bhajanlal Sharma.

Following its victory in 115 out of the 199 seats that were up for election on November 25, the BJP made a comeback to power in Rajasthan last week.

Vasundhara Raje, a two-term chief minister, is one of the front-runners for the position. She actively campaigned for the party during the assembly elections. The 70-year-old, a five-time member of the Parliament, has served as the face of the BJP in Rajasthan for the past 20 years.

Gajendra Singh Shekhawat, a union minister, is another strong candidate. The 56-year-old, known as the BJP’s Rajput face, gained notoriety in 2019 when he defeated Vaibhav, the son of former chief minister Ashok Gehlot, in the Jodhpur Lok Sabha polls. Shekhawat is seen as having a tight relationship with the senior leadership of the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS). Gehlot has charged Shekhawat with planning to overthrow the Congress government in 2020 and with being involved in a credit cooperative scam.

Former bureaucrat Arjun Ram Meghwal, the Union law minister, is a third front-runner. CP Joshi, a former Chittorgarh lawmaker, is also regarded as a possibility.

It’s also thought that senior party leader Om Prakash Mathur, speaker of the Lok Sabha Om Birla, national general secretary Sunil Bansal, and union minister Ashwini Vaishnaw are running. Among the candidates are three resigned MPs, Baba Balaknath, Diya Kumari, and Kirodi Lal Meena.

Arun Singh, the state’s chief minister, responded, “Everything will be revealed tomorrow,” when questioned about the likelihood of a Dalit leader being selected for the position.

State BJP president CP Joshi arrived at the BJP office on Monday afternoon and, along with other leaders including Chandrashekhar, the organisation secretary, and former MLA Rajendra Rathore, visited the newly elected MLAs.

Rathore, meanwhile, denounced reported attempts by party leaders to advocate for the position of chief minister.

“The BJP received votes in the name of Prime Minister Narendra Modi. His face is the strongest face of our party. Despite that, if someone thinks the party got votes on the basis of their face, they can remain in that misconception. In any case, calling MLAs and asking for their support is not the culture of the BJP,” he told reporters.

His remarks were made during the day when a number of MLAs convened at Raje’s Jaipur home.

Joshi responded, “She is our party’s national vice-president and a two-time chief minister,” when asked about Raje’s meeting. Meetings with top leaders are a common occurrence for recently elected MLAs.

The chief minister and his council of ministers will probably be sworn in on Friday, according to party officials.

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