Delhi: BJP president Amit Shah has postponed his three-day tour to Tamil Nadu, which was scheduled from tomorrow, amid speculation of a reshuffle in the Union cabinet.
“He has postponed his visit because his stay in the national capital was deemed to be more important in the coming few days,” a senior party leader said today when asked about the reason for the postponement. He did not wish to be quoted.
In a statement, Tamil Nadu BJP chief Tamilisai Sounderrajan said Shah had to postpone his visit due to a meeting with the party chief ministers in Delhi today and his subsequent requirement in various other important meetings.
As a result, his visit to Tamil Nadu as part of the 95-day nation wide tour has been postponed, she said.
The new schedule for his visit would be announced later, she added.
This is the second time Shah has deferred his trip to the southern state. He was earlier scheduled to visit Tamil Nadu in May but it was postponed as well.
The political situation in the state has been volatile for some time, first due to factional fight in the ruling AIADMK and then due to intense efforts for a merger between the two main groups, one headed by Chief Minister E K Palaniswami and another by former chief minister O Panneerselvam.
While both the factions have been friendly to the BJP and supported to its presidential and vice-presidential nominees, the saffron party has indicated its preference for their unification.
While the BJP has one Lok Sabha MP from the state, it has no representation in the 234-member state assembly, dominated by the AIADMK.
BJP sources also did not rule out the possibility of a Cabinet reshuffle which could see induction of members of the Nitish Kumar-led JD(U), which joined the NDA last Saturday.
Union minister and RLSP leader Upendra Kushwaha also met Shah.
With an eye on the 2019 Lok Sabha polls, the BJP chief is travelling across the country to strategise and find ways to strengthen the party at the grass-root level.