Welcoming Rajnath Singh as the new BJP president, outgoing party chief Nitin Gadkari on Wednesday said the latter's leadership skills would take the BJP to victory in the 2014 general elections.
"This election for the president of the party has been conducted successfully. Rajnath Singh is a leader of the cause of farmers and has worked as an Uttar Pradesh chief minister. He has the leadership skills to take us to victory in 2014. I suggested his name, and his name was agreed to by L.K. Advani and Sushma Swaraj," Gadkari told media here.
"The BJP is a democratic party. That someone like me, who has worked at the grassroots of the party, could become the party president is a sign of the greatness of this party," he said.
Rajnath Singh was formally elected as national president as there was no other leader from the party who had filed his or her nomination papers.
After his election on Wednesday, Singh was felicitated by senior leaders, including Gadkari, Advani, Dr. Murli Manohar Joshi, M. Venkaiah Naidu, Sushma Swaraj, Arun Jaitley, Ananth Kumar and Ramlal to file his nomination papers.
Singh filed his nomination papers for the post of president after incumbent Nitin Gadkari resigned as the head of the organisation. A total 18 sets of nomination papers were filed in favour of Singh.
"Rajnath Singh has not withdrawn his nomination papers. He being the single candidate after end of nominations is being declared elected for post of BJP president," said returning officer of the BJP, Thawar Chand Gehlot.
In a day of dramatic developments on Tuesday, which were capped by Gadkari's late night announcement, Rajnath Singh emerged as the frontrunner in the BJP presidential poll battle.
Gadkari opted out of the election process on grounds that he had to spend time addressing allegations levelled by the income tax department relating to business deals of the Purti group of companies. (ANI)