INLD-BSP to jointly contest Haryana polls, Abhay Chautala chief ministerial face

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INLD Chief Abhay Chautala (File image)

INLD Chief Abhay Chautala (File image)

Chandigarh: The Indian National Lok Dal has decided to again join hands with its former ally Bahujan Samaj Party for the Haryana Assembly polls scheduled later this year, the leaders of the two parties announced on Thursday.

Under the arrangement, out of 90 assembly seats in Haryana, the BSP will contest 37 seats leaving the rest for its senior partner in Haryana, where the ruling BJP is eyeing to come to power for third time in a row.

Addressing a joint press conference with the BSP at Nayagaon on the outskirts of Chandigarh, INLD leader Abhay Chautala, who will be the chief ministerial face of the alliance, asserted that the alliance is not based on any selfish interests, but has been formed keeping in mind people's feelings.

"In Haryana, we have decided to jointly fight the upcoming assembly elections. Today, the feeling of common people is to oust from power the BJP, which is looting the state, and keep the Congress party at bay, which looted the state for 10 years earlier," Chautala said.

BSP national coordinator Akash Anand said recently BSP supremo Mayawati and Abhay Chautala had held a detailed meeting regarding firming up of the alliance.

"In that meeting, it had been decided that out of 90 assembly seats in Haryana, the BSP will contest on 37 seats while the rest will be fought by the INLD," he said.

Anand said that if alliance comes to power in the state, Abhay Chautala will be made chief minister.

This alliance will not be limited to fighting assembly polls only as we will fight other elections in the state jointly in the future, Anand said.

Chautala said Chaudhary Devi Lal and BSP founder late Kanshi Ram worked to bring a big change in this country. The BSP and INLD's thinking is how the poor will get justice and how weaker sections will get empowered, he said.

In February 2019, the BSP had called off its nearly nine-month-old alliance with the INLD, which was then Haryana's main opposition outfit. The development at that time had come amid a feud in the Chautala family.

Former MP and Abhay Chautala's elder brother Ajay Singh Chautala and Ajay's son Dushyant Chautala had formed the JJP party in December 2018 after a split in the INLD earlier that year.

The INLD and the BSP fought the recently held Lok Sabha polls separately in Haryana and both received a severe drubbing.

The BSP had fought nine of 10 parliamentary seats while the INLD contested seven seats, but both failed to open their account.

Abhay Chautala, who is INLD's lone MLA in Haryana, had also entered the fray from the Kurukshetra parliamentary seat but lost.