Ajit Jogi, the former Chhattisgarh chief minister, who quit Congress party last fortnight has floated his own outfit Chhattisgarh Janata Congress (Jogi), in short CJCJ. He chose a word each from Congress and ruling BJP.
Announcing the decision with full rhetoric at a rally in the ancestral village of Chhattisgarh Chief Minister Raman Singh, the maverick bureaucrat turned politician chose a village girl to declare the name of his new party on a black board.
As the Class XII student of Thatapur village wrote the name of the party, Ajit Jogi made people take oath in Chhatisgarhi language saying that "from now onwards all decisions of state would be taken in Chhattisgarh not in Delhi". He clearly hinted towards becoming a regional force.
CJCJ is the third regional party after Vidyacharan Shukla formed state unit of NCP in 2003. In 2008 another regional party, Chhattisgarh Swabhiman Manch, was formed which could not take off.
Displaying high level of symbolism and rhetoric, Jogi wore a silver crown and chose to launch his new outfit from the pocket-borough of Chief Minister Raman Singh. Few months back, Jogi, in a leaked phone conversation between him and chief minister, was alleged to have hobnobbed with BJP to defeat a Congress candidate in Antagarh by-election.
He said he chose the day and date as per the suggestions of an Andhra Pradesh astrologer with the tagline of "sarvjan hitaya, sarvadharm sukhay ( in the interest of all and for happiness of all religions)".
He declared that in 2018 elections he will make the state free from sales tax. He even announced sops for farmers like free power and waiver of farm-loans.
In the run up to the formation of the new party, Jogi claimed that he had consulted his one lakh supporters and asked them their choice from eight probable names and six symbols. On June 6, he had announced his decision to launch the new political outfit at Marwahi.
He said that his new party would form government in 2018 and all those who are sons of soil will get party ticket. He said his focus would be on selecting those who knew the Chhattisgarhi dialect, into government service.
His son Amit Jogi, who is an MLA, was present on the occasion while his wife Renu Jogi was conspicuous by her absence.
Meanwhile, on the same day, Congress party chose to hold a massive rally at Marwahi, the assembly constituency and home of Ajit Jogi, as a show of strength. The rally was attended by all the top leaders and legislators of Congress party.