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BJP ‘Vistaraks’ to Help Gauge Voter Sentiment Ahead of Polls | Lucknow News – Times of India

Lucknow: The BJP has initiated the process of deploying ‘vistarak’ in all 80 Lok Sabha and 403 assembly seats of UP in what potentially marks saffron outfit’s key move to press the poll accelerator ahead of the Lok Sabha elections due next year.
A ‘vistarak’ is a full time party functionary entrusted with the job of gathering independent ground level feedback about the political situation from a parliamentary and assembly constituency.
Sources said that the BJP has sought a ground level input vis-à-vis implementation and impact of various public centric schemes initiated by the Centre and the state government and the performance of the MPs and the MLAs in their respective constituencies.
This input which is expected to start pooling in from December will factor prominently in BJP’s electoral strategy besides determining the fate of the various public representatives, essentially MPs.
The move also coincides with BJP plans of asking its MPs to start giving their ‘report cards’ pertaining to their performance in the last five years. The MPs, sources said, will have to tell how much they reached out to the public. They will have to tell how many schemes they started in their parliamentary constituency, the status of schemes launched by the Central and state governments, how much MP Local Area Development Fund has been spent and how much is left.
Notably, the idea of deploying ‘vistarak’ was first mooted by home minister Amit Shah during his stint as UP incharge of the BJP before the 2014 Lok Sabha elections which saw the BJP led NDA winning 73 out of 80 parliamentary seats in the politically crucial state.
A senior BJP leader associated with the exercise said that the idea was to fill in the voids which are often left unattended. “They (vistaraks) have also been asked to work in close coordination with the organizational functionaries to bolster party’s footprints in assigned areas,” he said.
The role of ‘vistaraks’, sources said, will be critically important in the 14 Lok Sabha seats which the BJP lost in the 2019 national elections when the SP and the BSP forged an alliance. Even as the two regional outfits snapped ties, the BJP managed to win back Azamgarh and Rampur Lok Sabha seats in subsequent by-polls.
Experts said that the BJP was also keen to get threadbare pointers amid an aggressive positioning by the opposition especially the Congress and the Samajwadi Party, the two key constituents of the bloc INDIA.

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