New Delhi : The Bharatiya Janata Party-Haryana Janhit Congress (HJC) alliance in Haryana was slated to sweep the state assembly elections due in October. But the political equation has undergone a shift as the HJC has decided to ‘dump’ the BJP.
It was a three-year old alliance with an understanding that the BJP would have an upper hand at the national level, and the HJC would get its opportunity in the state elections. But the May 2014 elections have rewritten the rules of engagement. So, there was no way the BJP was going to be amenable to the pre-May 2014 formula that the HJC would get 45 of the 90 seats and its nominee would be projected as the future chief minister. Besides, the HJC chief Kuldeep Bishnoi was also being ignored at high profile events organised by the BJP, like Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s recent public meeting in the state.
So, Bishnoi called off the alliance unilaterally and accused the BJP of betrayal. He also charged the BJP with sabotaging his election. Of the 10 seats in the state in the general election, the BJP won had 7, and the HJC lost both the seats that were given to it in the seat sharing arrangement.
Bishnoi is the son of the former Haryana leader Bhajan Lal who played a long innings in the state and central governments. He is now expected to stitch some other alliance, and the contests shall get multi-cornered.
The BJP reacted with a sharp comment and charged that Bishnoi had agreed to play the Congress game. ‘‘He has ignored the widespread people’s sentiment in favour of Prime Minister Modi and against the Congress government in the state,” said BJP leader Shahnawaz Hussain while adding that the HJC is now reduced to being a B-team of the Congress.