Last-minute efforts to convince Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) general secretary and former Member of Parliament Vijay Goel to opt for Chandni Chowk parliamentary seat in place of the New Delhi seat once again delayed the announcement of BJP’s seven Lok Sabha candidates in Delhi.
The party is believed to have finalised candidates for the six other seats and is likely to announce the complete list today, said sources.
While BJP’s Central Election Committee (CEC) — which met twice on Tuesday — announced candidates for Gujarat, Karnataka, Maharashtra, Bihar and Andhra Pradesh, a decision on Delhi was put on hold after leaders could not agree on the candidate for New Delhi seat.
Sources said BJP leaders could not convince Goel to opt for the Chandni Chowk seat. The party is keen to field Delhi mayor Arti Mehra from there.
Goel had lost the 2004 parliamentary election from Sadar constituency. Following reconstitution of constituencies, the Sadar seat got merged with Chandni Chowk, Northwest and New Delhi seats.
“Goel has made his stand very clear that he will contest only from New Delhi. He is already miffed that the party did not accept his recommendations in the 2008 Assembly elections,” said a BJP insider.
But this time around, BJP sources said, Goel does not want to compromise. “He is annoyed by the way a section of party leaders have been treating him,” said a source.