BJP eyes non-Jat voters in Haryana with Bishnoi tie-up
The BJP on Saturday forged an alliance with Haryana Janhit Congress (HJC), a breakaway faction of the Congress founded by former Haryana CM Bhajan Lal.delhi Updated: Sep 10, 2011 22:13 IST
The BJP on Saturday embarked on a new political experiment in Haryana, attempting to consolidate all non-Jat forces under its umbrella. It forged an alliance with Haryana Janhit Congress (HJC), a breakaway faction of the Congress founded by former Haryana CM Bhajan Lal.
The alliance was announced at a joint press conference addressed by BJP president Nitin Gadkari, party leader Sushma Swaraj and HJC founder's son Kuldeep Bishnoi.
Both sides even forged a pact on the number of seats they will contest in the Lok Sabha and the Haryana assembly elections together.
While the BJP will get to contest the lion share of eight of the ten Lok Sabha seats, it will share evenly 90 assembly seats.
To begin, the BJP will back HJC in the by-election for the Hisar Lok Sabha seat, which is to be held on October 13. The seat was held by Bishnoi's father, late Bhajan Lal.
Swaraj declared this marks a "new chapter in Haryana politics and is a culmination of talks which had been going on for some time." She said, "In the assembly elections, each of the two parties will contest half of the seats while in Lok Sabha polls, BJP will put up candidates for eight seats and HJC for two seats. In case, we form a government in the state, HJC will rule for the first two and a half years and BJP for the remaining two and a half," Swaraj said.
There will also be a deputy CM from the other party. Confirming the pact, Bishnoi told HT that "ours is a natural alliance and we're making it clear to our cadres and people what's exactly our understanding so that both parties can work together for Haryana's better future." He said the people were seeking a change in the state.
With Haryana CM BS Hooda seen as the Jat face of the Congress, BJP leaders said the tie-up with Bishnoi will mean the rallying point for non-Jat voters would be their alliance.
The BJP's earlier attempt was with Om Prakash Chautala-led INLD. But it had come to a nought during the 2009 Lok Sabha polls as the Jat voters preferred Hooda.
Bishnoi may contest for the Hisar Lok Sabha seat. Ajay Singh Chautala (INLD) may contest against him.