Unable to pacify rebel candidates and make them withdraw their nominations, both the Congress and the BJP have decided to take strict action against them.
To send a message that indiscipline would not be tolerated, senior leaders of the two major political parties said that the “strictest possible action” would be taken against those who continued to remain in the fray against the official party candidates."Those who are still fighting will be expelled," said Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee president Jai Prakash Aggarwal.
“Last minute efforts are on to pacify rebels and convince them to work for the official party candidate. If some candidates continue to run their own campaign, strict action will be taken,” Delhi BJP president Vijender Gupta said.
Many rebel candidates — tickets from whose wards were given to other candidates by the Congress and the BJP — have filed their nominations either as independents or on the ticket of smaller and regional parties.
Though both parties are reluctant to disclose the exact number of rebels, estimates say there are at least 60 such candidates in the fray.
In some cases, the aspirants have made their family members — either wife, sibling or children — file nomination against the official candidate of their party, while other who were denied tickets have openly announced support for candidates of other political parties.
Workers of both the parties allege that senior leaders have wilfully ignored deserving candidates and have handed out tickets to their own kith and kin. Allegations of money changing hands in return of party candidature are also flying thick in both the Congress and the BJP.
Senior Congress leaders claim there are disgruntled candidates in almost all elections and they will manage to pacify most of them. “There is no point in rushing and taking action against them. These are delicate matters. They are all family and it is important to maintain good relations with them. We are taking to them and I am sure we will somehow manage to convince them to work for the party,” Aggarwal said.
Official candidates of the BJP and the Congress, however, feel immediate expulsion of rebels is a must to send the message in the electorate that big political parties do not tolerate indiscipline.