By Pramod Kumar
The BJP high command’s decision to allow its Haryana unit to go alone in the forthcoming Assembly elections in the state has energised the party workers as well as sympathisers who were fed up with supporting opportunist groups and parties in almost every election. The decision that has widely been welcomed by the cadre has also disturbed the political equations of the ruling Indian National Lok Dal (INLD) which had received a rude setback in the recent Lok Sabha elections when it could not even open its account in the state. The BJP had won one seat of Sonepat where its candidate Kishan Singh Sangwan defeated the Congress candidate. The INLD chief’s two sons, Ajay Chautala and Abhay Chautala, who had contested from Bhiwani and Kurukshetra respectively, lost by a huge margin. The remaining nine seats were won by the Congress.
The confused Chief Minister, Om Prakash Chautala who once used to ridicule the BJP activists, is now reportedly sending feelers to the BJP camp in order to enter into a pre-poll alliance in the Assembly elections. But BJP has reportedly said a clear ‘no’.
At present the BJP has no seat in the Haryana Assembly. All its six members resigned about three months ago on the issue of Satluj-Yamuna Link Canal. The BJP contested the last Assembly elections in an alliance with the INLD but did not share power with it. The Congress won 22 seats in the Assembly.
The Haryana Vikas Congress of Ch. Bansi Lal, who has now merged his party with the Congress, won two seats. In Lok Sabha elections, the HVP could not even open its account. This could be the reason that Bansi Lal decided to return home. The INLD has 46 seats in the present Assembly.
The two-day meeting of the state BJP executive that concluded on December 5 in Rohtak has sent the clear message to the rank and file that the party is determined to contest on its own in the state. Addressing the party workers at the executive meeting, Shivraj Singh Chauhan, BJP general secretary and incharge of Haryana state, said that he agreed with the Haryana leadership that the BJP should not let any other party fire the gun from its shoulder. The state unit was opposed to entering into any alliance in Haryana after it withdrew support to the INLD-led government prior to the Lok Sabha elections. Since then, it had been steadfastly selling this line to the central leadership.
The state party president, Shri Ganeshi Lal too voiced similar sentiments. He said the party deployed every means available to assess the mood of the masses and on the basis of the reports received it had found it to feasible to contest the elections on its own. He targetted both the INLD and the Congress saying that there was very little difference between the two. He termed both parties as individualistic and casteist. “The people of Haryana have tested both these parties many times and the electorate now wants the BJP to go it alone and form the government. The BJP has decided to focus on the INLD’s anti-people policies and various scandals involving the ruling family. We have also drafted our manifesto in the shape of a ‘vision document’, which will be made public very soon. The vision document speaks of the constitution of commissions for every section of the society so that the BJP government, if voted to power, could consult these commissions to ameliorate the condition of the common man,” Shri Ganeshi Lal added.
After the Lok Sabha elections undoubtedly the Congress has emerged as a strong force in Haryana. The merger with HVC has made it stronger. But the merger has also accelerated the infightings in the party unit. Today there are more than 10 factions in the Haryana Congress and every faction is trying to overpower the other. Every faction’s leader has his own reasons to become the next Chief Minister. That is why everyone is trying to obtain more and more tickets to satisfy his supporters. The Pradesh Congress Committee President, Bhajan Lal, has claimed himself as the only and undisputed candidate for chief ministership. But the Congress high command, by appointing Randip Singh Surjewala as the working president, has indicated that there are many more faces for the post. It has further accelerated the infightings. Today the situation is so bad that no event in Congress passes without any clash occurring among the senior functionaries of the party. The rift between Bhajan Lal and the officiating leader of Congress Legislative Party, Ajay Singh Yadav is too obvious that neither wants to see the other’s face. By and large, the people of the state are fed up with the INLD while the Congress suffers from deep-rooted factionalism. Under these circumstances, the BJP has bright future in Haryana.