Crowds of farmers, traders, employees and people in saffron robes, shouting with élan, setting off fireworks, pushing each other, at times uncontrollable — it was quite a crowd of BJP supporters at the meeting of the party’s newly elected legislators at which Manohar Lal Khattar was officially chosen as their leader and thus the next chief minister, in Chandigarh on Tuesday.
The unending flow of supporters from across the state that began hours before the meeting time soon turned into a deluge, despite several restrictions by police. Though Khattar was among those who arrived early, and the MLAs and other senior leaders began to arrive later accompanied by their supporters.
Such was the enthusiasm among the supporters that the situation appeared to go out of hand upon arrival of senior BJP leader and Haryana incharge Kailash Vijayavargiya, as his security staff and supporters of some other leaders and MLAs pushed each other. And it was not an isolated case. Similar pandemonium prevailed at the arrival of several others as well as at the end of the meeting that went on till around 2pm when Khattar’s name was announced. The immediate fallout? In excitement, some workers jostled and fell down on the flowerpots.
While chaos at times seemed the order of the day for supporters, police personnel as well as the media – though no seriously untoward incident took place — the faces of the new MLAs glowed with confidence.
The melee morphed into a Diwali bash of sorts as some groups of supporters set off fireworks and burst crackers in the lawns of the venue, the UT Guest House. This soon was replaced by the Haryanvi rural dances and the essentially Punjabi bhangra.
Similar crowds accompanied a smaller group of MLAs to the adjacent Haryana Raj Bhawan (Governor’s House) where a few employees failed to get in and could be seen standing away from the crowds after parking their cars even further away.
Success and ahead
Here are some replies of BJP MLAs and leaders when they were asked why they thought the BJP was successful in getting to form a government on its own in Haryana for the first time, and whether or not it would be able to govern well.
*This time, Haryana has seen the end of caste politics, and will also see good governance now.
Capt Abhimanyu, MLA from Narnaund
*So what, if some of the MLAs are inexperienced? Seniors like me are there to assist and guide them.
Rattan Lal Kataria, Ambala MP
*Leaders like Narendra Modi, Amit Shah and others are there to extend all types of guidance to the new MLAs.
Krishan Pal Gurjar, Faridabad MP and minister in Modi government.
*All the members of this team are well-meaning, and that would be translated into good functioning
OP Dhankar, MLA from Badli and BJP farmer wing leader
*Modiji ka aur Amit Shahji ka kuchh to plan hoga hi; woh guide kareinge hamein (Modi and Shah must have a plan for us)
Prem Lata, MLA, Uchana Kalan; wife of Congressman-turned-BJP leader Birender Singh
*We are a team of confident workers.
Anil Vij, MLA from Ambala Cantt
*Many of us are well-educated, know the system and are keen to learn further. We surely will not disappoint the people of Haryana.
Rohita Rewri, MLA from Panipat City