The rain on Thursday evening may have pulled the mercury down but the political temperature is soaring in the capital over attempts at government formation. The BJP on Thursday said a decision is likely only after the Delhi budget is presented in Parliament on Friday.
Sources said while the RSS is not keen on the BJP forming a government, BJP MLAs, who fear they may lose their seats if fresh polls are held, want a shot at power.
“During a meeting at RSS headquarters, senior leaders disapproved of the BJP move to form a government. There was a feeling that this would dent our image and might be construed as greed. This may harm the party in other states,” a senior BJP leader said.
Sources in the BJP claimed that the party could have formed the government had it been done in a more discreet manner. “Now, both the Congress and the AAP are keeping a strict watch on their MLAs. A decision on government formation is possible only after analysing the reactions to the Delhi budget,” the leader said.
Delhi BJP chief Satish Upadhyay, who a day earlier had said all options are open for the party, on Thursday claimed that the BJP did not have the numbers to form the government.
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“I believe that the ball is in the court of the AAP and the Congress. They have had their alliance earlier also. As of today, we do not have the numbers. And we have not been called by the L-G yet. If we are called, we will analyse our position as we do not have support. We are ready for polls if needed,” Upadhyay said.
But senior BJP leader Rambir Singh Bidhuri said, “I am in touch with MLAs from other parties and I am confident that we have the numbers. The day our central leadership decides, we will form the government.” Meanwhile, responding to the “baseless” allegations levelled by AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal, BJP leader R P Singh has filed a defamation case against him.
The Congress too said it was “surprised” by AAP’s allegations that BJP is resorting to back-door tactics to form a government. “It’s very surprising. I have been in talks with the top leadership of AAP regarding the possibility of an alliance,” Congress MLA from Okhla Asif Mohammad Khan said.
On Thursday, the six Congress MLAs who were allegedly being courted by the BJP met Delhi in-charge Shakeel Ahmed and assured him that there was no question of them leaving. “There is no question of anyone leaving the party. We are ready for elections,” Ahmed said.
The AAP MLAs too met on Thursday to discuss government formation.
Senior AAP leader Manish Sisodia said, “We discussed BJP’s attempts at horse trading. All MLAs understand their responsibility and we will not allow any buying or selling. Not even one AAP MLA will give in to these attempts, everyone wants a election. We have not got an appointment with the L-G. It is likely to happen on Monday.”
While a section of AAP MLAs had earlier urged the party to form the government, the AAP now says it wants fresh Delhi elections.