A day after BJP General Secretary (organisation) Ramlal was moved back to the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh (RSS), party President and Union Home Minister Amit Shah elevated joint General Secretary (organisation) BL Santhosh to the post on Sunday.
After a 13 year stint, Ramlal was moved back to the party's parent organisation on Saturday. The General Secretary's post is considered to be the second most powerful position in the BJP, after its President.
In a statement issued on Sunday, the BJP said that Santhosh has been appointed the party's General Secretary with immediate effect.
Santhosh, an RSS pracharak and a specialist on Karnataka has vast experience in electoral politics. He worked in Shivamogga during the 2005 Assembly elections in Karnataka. After serving for eight years as the party's General Secretary (organisation) in Karnataka, Santhosh was made the national office bearer in charge of the southern states in 2014.
In the run up to the 2018 Karnataka Assembly elections, Santhosh was entrusted with the job of strengthening the party at the grassroot level by BJP president Amit Shah. In a meeting held in New Delhi, Yeddyurappa was asked to work with Santhosh in the run-up to the Karnataka elections in which the BJP won 105 seats but failed to form the government.
In his new role, Santhosh will be in a position which normally acts as a bridge between the RSS and the party. It is also believed that Santhosh shares animosity with current BJP State President BS Yeddyurappa and had a role in ensuring Yeddyurappa resigned as Chief Minister in 2011.The elevation of the strategist is likely to have an impact on the politics in Karnataka, especially at a time politics is in a state of limbo.
His appointment has come at a crucial time when 15 MLAs from the JD(S)-Congress coalition in Karnataka have moved the Supreme Court against the Speaker of the Legislative Assembly for not accepting their resignations. In all, 16 MLAs have submitted their resignations from the Karnataka Assembly.
66-year-old Ramlal has been appointed as the RSS Akhil Bharatiya Sah Sampark Pramukh, or co-convenor, of all-India public relations. He is considered to be rooted to the ground and is known to take organisational meetings routinely. He was regarded as the voice of the party cadres, especially when it came to addressing their grievances. He also stepped in if there were differences between the senior leaders of the party.
(With IANs inputs)