M A I N   N E W S

Logjam over Delhi govt formation
Tribune News Service

New Delhi, December 9
Faced with an unclear verdict in the Delhi Assembly, stalemate over the formation of the next government persisted with both the BJP and the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) emphasising preference to be in the opposition instead of making any effort to form or prop up a government.

A formal notification from the Election Commission containing names of the newly elected members of the 70-member assembly is under preparation.

A spokesman for the Lieutenant Governorís office told TNS that the notification was awaited and any move on the formation of the next government would begin after that. There are indications that the notification could be sent by tomorrow.

Union Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde today said the LG would first explore all options of forming a government.

Irrespective of the public stand by either party, sources said the LG would ascertain first from the BJP, the single largest party, whether it was in a position to form a government. In case the BJP declines, a similar offer would be made to the AAP. Having bagged 32 seats, including one of the Shiromani Akali Dal, but four short of a simple majority, the BJP state unit chief Vijay Goel maintained there has been no contact with anyone on government formation.

At a party meeting last night attended, among others, by Nitin Gadkari, Goel and its Delhi chief ministerial candidate Harsh Vardhan, it was decided that the BJP would neither form a government with the help of AAP nor indulge in any horse trading or induce defections.

AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal and his team members have been stating the partyís preference to occupy the opposition benches.

However, the party is also mindful of the attempt to shift the onus on AAP in case Delhi goes in for re-polls. Kejriwal told a television channel that instead subjecting the people of Delhi to another round of elections, the BJP should form a government with the help of the Congress accusing that both have been working in tandem away from public spotlight.

Delhi could either go the Bihar way when in May 2005, in the absence of any party forming a government, the Centre dissolved the newly elected House leading to fresh elections that brought the Janata Dal (United)-BJP government to power. 

Notification awaited

* A notification from EC containing names of the newly elected members is under preparation

* Any move on the govt formation would begin after that

* Home Minister Sushilkumar Shinde said the Lieutenant Governor would explore all options of govt formation

* The LG would first ask the BJP, as the single-largest party, whether it was in a position to form a government

* If the BJP declines, a similar offer will be made to the AAP





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