Former party president and BJPs Delhi in-charge Nitin Gadkaris remark that only an elected legislator would be considered for the post of CM has shattered the ambitions of veteran leaders seeking tickets for their kin.
These leaders,mostly claimants to the CM post,now intend to contest elections themselves. On the other hand,Congress ticket aspirants enjoy the luxury of not having to make such a binary choice yet. They point to Chief Minister Sheila Dikshits remarks that winnability will be the primary criteria in her partys quest for victory.
In an interview to Newsline,Gadkari asserted that only an MLA will be considered for the post of CM. His statement has all but ensured that senior partymen such as Leader of Opposition V K Malhotra and Delhi unit chief Vijay Goel have to shut out the option of seeking tickets for family members.
Earlier,Malhotra had sought a ticket from Greater Kailash his constituency for his son Ajay. Sources said Goel,if not announced as the CM candidate,wanted to fight the Lok Sabha elections in 2014 and seek an Assembly ticket for his wife,Preeti.
Now that Gadkari has made it clear that only an MLA will be a CM candidate,senior leaders will have to fight the elections themselves if they have CM ambitions rather than seek tickets for sons or wives, a leader said.
Others in the list of party heavyweights who may have to surrender their demand for two tickets include former Delhi unit chief Mange Ram Garg,who has been demanding a ticket for his son from Wazirpur constituency.
Parvesh Verma,son of former Chief Minister Sahib Singh Verma,is a strong contender for a ticket and Vimal Khurana,elder son of former Chief Minister Madan Lal Khurana,too has been demanding ticket from Moti Nagar. Ajay Malhotra has been seen accompanying his father,V K Malhotra,in his constituency. MLA Harsharan Singh Balli wants a seat for his wife or son from the Hari Nagar seat. Tilak Nagar MLA
O P Babbar is also lobbying for a ticket to his son.
Not so In Congress
Several senior Congress leaders,including MLAs and MPs,have sought tickets for family members. Sources said these leaders were emboldened by Dikshits remarks that the party would not deny ticket applications and winnability of candidates would be considered.
The list of leaders and their relatives who have sought tickets includes Delhi Assembly Speaker Yoganand Shastri and his sister-in-law; Pervez Hashmi and his son; Mangat Ram Singhal and his son; Mala Ram Gangwal and his son; Mukesh Sharma and his son.