BJP, INLD split in Haryana

Chautala-led party wants to contest all seats

BJP, INLD split in Haryana

BJP leader L K Advani, party president Rajnath Singh, Sushma Swaraj, Ananth Kumar and other leaders at party's central election committee meeting in New Delhi on Saturday. PTI

BJP General Secretary in charge of Haryana, Vijay Goel said on Monday that major disagreements in seat-sharing arrangements and questions over which party should occupy the chief minister's position after the elections have forced the parties to break their ties.

According to the Vijay Goel, the INLD had rejected the demand that both parties should contest in 45 seats each, which the BJP considers necessary following the setback the alliance had suffered at the hands of the Congress in theLok Sabha elections. It also refused to consider another BJP demand that the post of chief minister must go to the party with largest number of seats. Sources within the BJP pointed out that Chautala offered just 29 seats for the party and was prepared to declare himself as the chief ministerial candidate in the event of the alliance winning total majority.

The alliance has been teetering on the brink of collapse as the Haryana unit of the BJP has been staunchly opposed to any ties with the INLD, and had failed to do the ground work during the recent parliament elections. Goel also said the BJP would shortly announce candidates for all the 90 assembly seats.

Ever since the alliance's hay day in the late 1990s—when the INLD-BJP combine had won all the ten parliamentary seats and followed it up with an astonishing victory in the 2000 assembly polls—the parties have been indecisive about their ties.

Bitterness between the partners led to snapping of ties in 2004, which had resulted in a complete disaster. While the INLD couldn't manage a seat in parliament during 2004 Lok Sabha elections, the BJP managed just one seat.

A hasty patch up was arranged ahead of the 2009 elections, but it could do nothing to stop the Congress from repeating their feat in 2004.

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