There is rumbling within Madhya Pradesh BJP following the loss in Jhabua Assembly bypoll, with senior leader Raghunandan Sharma saying on Saturday that there was lack of “communication” within the state unit.

Earlier, Kedarnath Shukla, a senior BJP MLA, had lashed out at state unit chief Rakesh Singh over the defeat.

The ruling Congress won the October 21 by-election, increasing its tally in the Madhya Pradesh Assembly to 115, one short of a simple majority.

“The defeat in Jhabua was too big. We lost the election by over 27,000 votes. BJP had an edge over the Congress in the entire MP, but we lost this election. There is a need for introspection, at least to find out the cause of the defeat,” the former Rajya Sabha member told PTI.

“There is a lack of communication (within the state BJP)…Senior leaders were not consulted about the bypoll. The communication gap should be bridged. I feel there was a shortcoming in the management also,” Sharma said when asked about Kedarnath Shukla’s outburst against state BJP leadership.

Shukla, MLA from Sidhi, had on Thursday blamed “poor performance” by Rakesh Singh and demanded that he be removed. Sharma said he did not support Shukla’s demand.

“Removing someone midway through the term is not good. Election for state unit chief is due in December. Workers will decide who should be retained or removed,” Sharma said.

Shukla has been served a show-cause notice for speaking against Singh.

He told PTI on Saturday that he had not received the notice yet.

“It will be good if I get the notice, as it will give me an opportunity to speak out. I will get a platform to communicate. This (communication) is what is lacking. There is no one to hear us. I stick to the demand that the state party chief be removed,” he said.