The Bharatiya Janata Party has projected BC Khanduri as Chief Ministerial candidate in a bid to regain power in Uttarakhand. The BJP decided to replace former Chief Minister Ramesh Pokhriayal Nishank by Khanduri just before the Assembly polls. Political observers viewed the move as a makeover of party's image. He even had a prominent say in the distribution of tickets in the state. Here are few excerpts of his views, he shared with Dainik Jagran, on the emerging political scenario in the state.

Is BJP coming back to power?

I firmly believe that BJP will regain power with a thumping majority.

Why do you think the voters should vote for you?

Both BJP and Congress have ruled in the state for five years. Now people can easily compare the two and everyone is already witnessing the discrimination by Congress led UPA government at the centre.

Are you fighting elections on the basis of whole five years of BJP rule or merely three months of your tenure?

For the entire five years. Our government did a great job.

Are you focusing more on your achievements or Center’s failure?

Voters’ should not be misled; they should decide between right and wrong before exercising their franchise.

What led to revolt in the party? Is the party not paying heavily for the personal likes and dislikes of heavy weights?

Because we were firm on the policies adopted and also there were some criterion laid down by the centre. Several constituencies had many eligible candidates therefore the anger was natural. However, things are fine now. Likes and dislikes of heavy weights was not in consideration, rather we worked out candidates only on the basis of survey.

Who will decide on CM, the MLAs or the high command?

There is a provision for the MLAs to elect their leader. The central leadership will also decide.

Why the women and youth have been given less tickets?

We did our best to give representation to everyone, but tickets were distributed on the basis of credibility. In the past we had adequate representation of youth and women.

Are senior leaders like Khandhuri and Koshiyari not dominating the party?

No; it is very natural to have senior leaders. As far as the growth of the young leaders is concerned, we already have a policy for youth. This has happened for the first time in 11 years. We have all the opportunities for the youth.

The public wants to know from you that in your government how many corrupt officials and politicians were punished?

The process of punishing the corrupt is too long. We have already started the process. Such points have been given proper attention in the Lokayukta Bill. When it is enforced, it will keep a check on all sorts of corruption.

Under what deal with Koshyari you were made the chief minister for the second time?

I am not aware of any such deal. I have always believed that if one has to make compromises and even recede in the interest of the state and the party, one must always do so.

(JPN/ Bureau)