BJP on Saturday pipped Congress in wooing former Haryana chief minister Bhajan Lal's son Kuldeep Bishnoi when his Haryana Janhit Congress forged an alliance with the party ahead of the by-election to his father's Lok Sabha constituency Hissar.
BJP president Nitin Gadkari and leader of the Opposition in Lok Sabha Sushma Swaraj welcomed the alliance with Bishnoi at a function held in the party headquarters New Delhi.
"I am happy that we are forming an alliance with Haryana Janhit Congress in Haryana... BJP will support the HJC candidate in forthcoming Hissar by-elections. We will also have an alliance in the next Assembly elections and the Lok Sabha polls. A good beginning is being made today," Gadkari said.
Bishnoi is likely to contest from Hissar, where by-elections will be held on October 13. The seat fell vacant after the death of Bhajan Lal in June.
He was also being wooed by Congress, which wanted him in the party to win the support of Bhajan Lal loyalists as well as widen its support base among non-Jat votes. Ajay Singh Chautala (INLD) is likely to contest against him.
Swaraj declared this marks a "new chapter" in Haryana politics and is a culmination of talks which had been going on for some time.
"In 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 chief minister from the other party.