The defeat in the recently concluded municipal polls has not deterred the Congress from giving one last shot at power.
Despite being the second largest party in South Delhi municipal corporation, where no party managed to get to the halfway mark, the Congress is exploring possibility of having its own mayor.
Senior party leaders have started deliberations with smaller parties and Independent councillors for support. They believe the party has a chance to get their candidate elected by virtue of having its MPs in all seven parliamentary constituencies in Delhi and several MLAs in assembly segments that fall in area covered under the south Delhi corporation. MPs and MLAs can vote in election of mayor in Delhi.The BJP had managed an easy victory in east Delhi and North Delhi corporations but it fell short of nine councillors to achieve majority in 104-member south Delhi corporation.
Apart from Congress, which won 29 seats, a number of smaller parties such as BSP, NCP, INLD and RLD have also won seats here and may support a Congress candidate for the post.
Hectic parleys took place at the offices and residences of several senior Congress leaders including chief minister Sheila Dikshit on Monday and Tuesday to discuss the pros and cons of getting support from marginal players. “Several leaders come and meet me everyday. We are not in the race of power. But you cannot say anything in politics,” Dikshit said when quizzed about the Congress strategy for mayor’s election.
NCP’s Delhi president Ramvir Singh Bidhuri has already offered the support of his councillors to the Congress.
West Delhi Congress MP and in-charge of south Delhi corporation Mahabal Mishra, however, said the party was weighing all options before agreeing on taking support of smaller parties.