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HindustanTimes Wed,23 Apr 2014

Harshvardhan all but certain to be BJP's face in Delhi polls: sources

Neelam Pandey , Hindustan Times  New Delhi, August 22, 2013
First Published: 21:56 IST(22/8/2013) | Last Updated: 21:58 IST(22/8/2013)

Notwithstanding the noises made in the BJP's Delhi unit over who should get the post of the party's election campaign committee chief, senior leader Harshvardhan's name seems to be almost final.

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Sources said Harshvardhan has the backing of the central leadership who feel that his clean image and public connect will work in his favour.

"Harshvardhan will be the face of the BJP. He has the backing of senior BJP leaders, including Arun Jaitley and Sushma Swaraj. Nitin Gadkari has played an instrumental role in this," said a source.

Earlier, in view of the differences over the chief ministerial candidate, senior leaders were planning to not announce any name before the assembly polls.

Instead, the party proposed to introduce the post of the chief of the election campaign committee to oversee the entire poll preparations.

However, BJP leaders are now fighting over who should have the post.

"VK Malhotraji is of the view that this post should be given to a person who can give undivided attention to the campaign and not to anyone contesting the poll as the person won't be able to do justice to the post. With a 'baniya' (a member of the trader community) heading the Delhi BJP, the other crucial post should be given to a member of another community to ensure equality," said a source.

With Delhi election in-charge Gadkari set to arrive in Delhi on Friday, party workers hope a decision will be taken soon.

"The issue has been dragging on for quite some time and a lot of damage has already been done. There is hardly any time left for the campaign and the infighting needs to end," said a senior BJP leader.

Sources said Malhotra does not plan to contest the assembly elections this time as he wants his son to get an opportunity.

"His son's name has been doing the rounds but a final decision will be taken by the party high command," said a source.

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