Suspense continues over new BJP government in Uttarakhand

New Delhi, March 17 (IANS): Even a week after the proclamation of the results of the assembly ballot, the suspense over the chief minister of Uttarakhand persists. Meanwhile, newly elected BJP MPs in the state have been told to stay in the state capital from March 20 for the next few days.

Assembly election results were announced on March 10 and the BJP had appointed central observers for the Legislative Party leader election on March 14, but even after a week there is no certainty about the date of the election of the new Chief Minister. The BJP has appointed Defense Minister Rajnath Singh and Foreign Minister Meenakshi Lekhi as central observers.

The BJP retained power for a second term in Uttarakhand by winning 47 seats in the 70-member House. A party insider says the defeat of incumbent President Pushkar Singh Dhami of Khatima is the main reason behind the delay in electing the new chief minister and forming a new government in Uttarakhand.

“After Dhami’s defeat, first of all, the party leadership will take a call whether or not he will have a chance to successfully lead the party to a historic victory. We have no idea about the formation of the government even after eight days of declaring the poll results,” a BJP leader from Uttarakhand said.

It is learned that the BJP leadership is trying to find an appropriate formula acceptable to all without going against its own position. “Our leaders are discussing several possibilities for the formation formula of the new Uttarakhand government and it is likely to be revealed in the next one or two days,” a BJP source said.

The BJP, meanwhile, has requested all newly elected MPs to be in Dehradun from March 20 to initiate and complete the process of forming a new government. “All BJP MLAs have been requested to stay in Dehradun for two or three days from March 20. We believe our leaders have given this directive to convene the legislative party meeting to elect a new leader and demand formation of the government.. The swearing-in will take place shortly after,” a party insider said.

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