Wednesday, Oct 01, 2014

Government formation not a major challenge, Delhi BJP chief tells Rajnath Singh

Delhi BJP president Satish Upadhyay briefed senior party leader and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh about party MLAs' views on the current political situation in Delhi. (Source:PTI) Delhi BJP president Satish Upadhyay briefed senior party leader and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh about party MLAs' views on the current political situation in Delhi. (Source:PTI)
PTI | New Delhi | Posted: July 20, 2014 1:01 pm | Updated: July 20, 2014 3:33 pm

Delhi BJP president Satish Upadhyay, on Sunday, briefed senior party leader and Union Home Minister Rajnath Singh about party MLAs’ views on the current political situation in Delhi and is understood to have conveyed to him that cobbling together a government will not be a major challenge.

After nearly an hour-long meeting with Singh, Upadhyay said the party will decide whether to take a shot at government formation if it is invited to do so by Lt Governor Najeeb Jung.

“No proposal has come to us as yet on government formation. Whatever will be done will be as per the Constitution. We will take a decision on government formation if such a proposal comes to us,” the newly-appointed Delhi BJP chief said.

Asked how BJP will manage the numbers as it will require the support of five more MLAs to prove majority in the Assembly, he only said the party will respond to the question if it gets an invite for government formation.

Currently, BJP, along with ally Akali Dal’s lone MLA, has 29 legislators and will require the support of five more MLAs to prove majority in the 70-member Assembly. At present the effective strength of the Assembly is 67 with three BJP MLAs being elected to the Lok Sabha.

BJP insiders claimed at least five Congress MLAs have indicated that they are ready to form a separate group and support a BJP government. To evade provisions under the anti-defection law, six Congress MLAs out eight will have to leave the party.

On Saturday, Congress had paraded all its MLAs before the media to show that all its legislators were firmly with the party and rejected speculation of any possible split.

Sources said Upadhyay conveyed to Singh about reluctance of party MLAs to face fresh election as they clearly had conveyed to him in a meeting four days back.

However, a section of the senior Delhi BJP leaders were not in favour of cobbling up a government arguing that it was better to go to polls as BJP had come first in 60 of the 70 Assembly segments in the Lok Sabha polls.

Meanwhile, former RSS leader Ram Madhav, who recently joined BJP, denied reports about RSS asking BJP leaders not to form a government in Delhi.

He said the reports were based on speculation and were “incorrect”. “We have checked with the Sangh leadership and they said they have not given any such directions to any BJP leader,” Madhav said.

Upadhyay also said the party was fully ready to go for fresh elections. “If elections are announced tomorrow, we are fully ready to face it. We are confident of getting a clear mandate to rule Delhi.”

A continued…

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