Chandigarh: Having got a majority on its own for the first time in Haryana, the BJP is likely to decide its chief ministerial candidate here Tuesday.
Well placed sources in the party said that the newly elected BJP legislators will meet here Tuesday and elect their leader who will be the next chief minister. The swearing in could take place before Diwali Oct 23.
The BJP parliamentary board has deputed Union Minister Venkaiah Naidu and senior leader Dinesh Sharma as observers for the meeting here.
The names doing rounds include Rashtriya Swayamsewak Sangh activist Manohar Lal Khattar, state BJP president Ram Bilas Sharma, BJP spokesperson Abhimanyu, senior legislator Anil Vij and BJP Kisan cell leader O.P. Dhankar. All of them have been elected legislators.
Khattar, despite being a first-time legislator with no administrative experience, is said to have an edge at the moment over others.
The sources said that the party could opt for one of the elected legislators to be the new chief minister.
Among the available legislators only Ram Bilas Sharma has been a minister in the past while Anil Vij has been legislator earlier also and was leader of the BJP group in the outgoing house. The rest have been elected for the first time and do not have administrative experience.
Other names of leaders, who did not contest, include Union Ministers Sushma Swaraj, Rao Inderjit Singh and Krishan Pal. The name of Congressman-turned-BJP leader Birender Singh is also being mentioned.
This is the first time that the BJP will form its own government in the state. The party had won only four assembly seats in the 2009 polls.
Results of the Haryana assembly election were historic for the BJP as the party romped home with 47 legislators. The INLD followed with 19 legislators while the Congress, which was in power since March 2005, managed to get only 15 seats. Two seats went to the HJC, one each to Shiromani Akali Dal and Bahujan Samaj Party (BSP). Five independent candidates were also elected.