Lucknow: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) is a divided house in Uttar Pradesh. Though the BJP president Nitin Gadkari is trying hard to keep his flock together ahead of the June 3 National Executive meeting in Lucknow, the widening gap among the senior party leaders in the state has pushed the national party into crisis in Uttar Pradesh, which goes to polls next year.

UP State President Surya Pratap Shahi's statement, which targeted senior party leaders’, added fuel to the fire. Shahi claimed that before his term in the state, BJP was just an observer in the game of politics but now under his leadership it is an active participant.

Shahi’s statement did hurt several senior leaders including former state president Ramapati Ram Tripathi. In fact, observers believe that actually Shahi’s statement was aimed at Tripathi solely.

Facing criticism from all quarters for ineffective governance and factionalism in the party, BJP, under political compulsiveness, is trying hard to show that there are no differences between Tripathi and Shahi, but actually the duo are at warring ends.

According to sources, all those party cadres who were against Ramapati Ram Tripathi have found a place in Shahi good books.

Sources also believe that Lalji Tandon has also played a major influence as Shahi is in the good books of the senior BJP leader. This favouritism has been eyed by many as a reason for factionalism in the state politics.

However, Lalji is unwilling to accept the fact that his liking has created a rift in the state BJP. He countered that he has nurtured the state politics with his sweat and blood over the years. However, several do not support his view as they link his biased attitude to the state President Neeraj Gupta’s relieving episode too.

It is said that Neeraj Gupta was dismissed because he was not Tandon’s ultimate choice.

Another reason which is nerving the party heads is that those involved in the Shahi committee are trying to prove their domination over others as this can invite grave trouble.

Recently, Murli Manohar Joshi’s felicitation on behalf of the state BJP has been linked with several political implications. The step has been viewed by many as a move to develop coercive equations in Delhi and neutralize Rajnath factor.

JPN/Bureau