As the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Tuesday announced the list of candidates from 21 wards for the upcoming municipal corporation elections, the faction led by local party president Sanjay Tandon walked away with the lion’s share, with at least 14 candidates belonging to his camp.
There are a total of 26 wards in the city. While the party failed to arrive at a consensus on its candidate for ward 3, it has left the remaining four seats for its alliance partner Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD), said a senior party leader.
Observers were keeping a watch on who of the four leaders will have maximum say in the list as the local party unit has four factions led by Sanjay Tandon, former MP Satya Pal Jain, MP Kirron Kher and former MP Harmohan Dhawan.
Party sources said the Jain group got three seats, Kirron Kher got two-three (one candidate is said to be a loyalist of both Kher and Tandon) seats and the Dhawan camp could manage to get one ticket only.
A senior BJP leader said it was unfortunate that Tandon’s candidates got preference over others. “Most of the BJP leaders were opposing the name of Satish Kainth, who is allegedly involved in a property grab case, was given ticket. There is lot of resentment over some names. I will speak to media on Wednesday,” he said.
The names were finalised in a meeting held in Delhi on Tuesday. While four seats were given to former presidents of the party’s youth wing, eight seats have been given to sitting councillors.
Sanjay Tandon said, “The decision on finalising the names was taken by the committee unanimously and there is no resentment over any name. As far ward 3 is concerned, we will finalise the names in a couple of days.”
“I was not aware of the list of candidates as I was in Allahabad and did not attend the meeting of the election committee in Delhi,” said former MP Satya Pal Jain.
“We have conveyed our demand for five seats to our party president Sukhbir Badal.We have asked for wards 9, 15 (reserved for women candidate), 10 (reserved for general category), 5 (reserved for scheduled caste woman), either ward 23 (reserved for SC category) or 24 (reserved for general category),” said local SAD president Jagjit Singh Kang.