Senior BJP leader P Murlidhar Rao said his party will project itself as an alternative to the ruling Sikkim Democratic Front (SDF), headed by Chief Minister Pawan Kumar Chamling, in the 2019 assembly polls.
Seeking to blunt the SDF's rhetoric that national parties were ignorant of the aspirations of the local people, Rao said his party will seek to take along all communities and accommodate their expectations before taking a plunge in electoral battlefield in the Himalayan state. "We are working at grass root level in Sikkim with an aim to project our party as a viable alternative to the SDF in the next assembly polls, due in 2019," he told reporters.
The BJP national general secretary, who is on a two-day visit to Sikkim to review activities of workers here, said his party will strive to provide a corruption-free government on twin agendas of development and good governance if elected to power. Asked about Chamling's recent criticism of BJP ideologies during panchayat poll campaigns, the BJP leader said the state government should concentrate on his government's activities instead of taking a dig at opposition parties.
Rao's visit to Sikkim comes nearly a month after another BJP leader Ram Madhav, the party's Jammu and Kashmir and North-East in-charge, visited the place and held a closed-door meeting with the Chief Minister's younger brother R N Chamling, an independent MLA from Rangang-Yangyang in South District.