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File: PTI FILE PHOTO/ KAMAL SINGH; PTI PHOTO/ KAMAL KISHORE
Hung Assembly in Delhi: Uncertainty Over Govt Formation

Delhi may be staring at the possibility of a spell of President's rule with both the major parties BJP and AAP saying they will not stake claim to form the government as they do not have the mandate.

Hectic consultations were on in both parties a day after the assembly elections returned a split verdict that gave majority to none in the 70-member assembly.

While BJP emerged as single largest party winning 31 seats, its ally Akali Dal (Badal) bagged one constituency, leaving it four MLAs short of majority mark of 36.

AAP on the other hand bagged 28 seats followed by Congress with eight. JD-U won one seat while the Mundka seat was won by an Independent.

After a meeting of top party leaders at Arvind Kejriwal's residence, AAP leader Yogendra Yadav said even if Lt Governor Najeeb Jung invites the party to form the government it will decline such an offer citing lack of majority.

"We are not going to form the government. We will sit in the opposition and play the role of a constructive opposition. As per the Constitution the largest party has to take the responsibility of forming government," Yadav said.

"We have not got majority so it is very surprising that the number one party (BJP) is not ready to form the government and telling us to do so," he said.

Kejriwal, who held another meeting with AAP's newly elected MLAs to discuss strategy, said they would prefer to sit in the opposition and face elections if the situation warranted.

Both BJP and AAP asserted that they would neither extend nor take support from each other.

Amid uncertainty in Government formation, senior BJP leaders also held series of meetings and maintained their earlier position that the party will not stake claim to form a government as it was short of a clear majority.

"We have no numbers. We do not want to purchase any MLAs," former BJP president Nitin Gadkari, who is party in-charge of Delhi, said.

"The LG will first explore all options of government formation. As of now, the Home Ministry has no role in it," Shinde told reporters here.

He was responding to a question on the possibility of imposition of President's rule in Delhi after the results of the Assembly elections where no party got absolute majority.

Sources said the LG is expected to call the single largest party BJP, which along with its partner Akali Dal's one seat has 32 MLAs, to know whether it is ready to form a new government.

If the BJP declines to form the government due to the lack of majority, the LG then may ask AAP whether it was in a position to form the government.

Sources said even though both BJP and AAP had declared that it would not stake claim of forming the government, the LG may call leaders of the two parties--Vardhan and Kejriwal--and discuss with them the posibility of government formation. If they stick to their public stand then, he may be left with little option but to recommend Central rule.

The outgoing assembly has been dissolved and the Lt Governor can set the ball in motion once the Election Commission notifies the new house.

Emerging story. Watch this space for updates as more details come in
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Digression

4/D-223
Dec 09, 2013
06:30 PM

"It is a strange situation where the single largest party is asking the number 2 party to form the government,"

It is a strange situation where the second largest party is shying away from forming the governement when offered a chance.

K.Suresh, Bangalore
3/D-209
Dec 09, 2013
05:45 PM

It is a strange situation where the single largest party is asking the number 2 party to form the government

Yogendra Yadav is misrepresenting facts. The BJP has done nothing of the sort. It has only said that it will not form the government as it lacks the majority. Nobody is telling the AAP what to do. What they decide is their own choice.

If BJP wants to lure Congress MLAs, then it will have to bring at least six of the total eight legislators to avoid the provisions under the anti-defection law.

Can someone clarify the following.

The 52nd Amendment inserted a provision in the 10th Schedule (para 3) that if one third of the members left a party, this is a split and not a defection.

However, the 91st Amendment deleted this provision so even if 99% of the members of a party switch sides they are defectors and hence liable to be disqualified.

How then has the writer arrived at the conclusion that if 6 out of 8 Consters join BJP they will not be disqualified? Since splits cannot occur even 7 out of 8 will incur disqualification. Of course if 6 legislators are disqualified for defection, the strength of the house becomes 64 and the halfway mark 32, which is what the BJP has. However as one BJP MLA becomes Speaker their strength reduces to 31 and they again become a minority.

I'm sure the Lt Governor is getting a headache.

Bonita, Chennai
2/D-183
Dec 09, 2013
04:19 PM

>> " single largest party BJP and runner up AAP refusing to stake claim "

President's Rule should be imposed....or the tax payers money will again be wasted in conducting re-election in case of Hung Assembly ??

JO MB, Kolkata
1/D-136
Dec 09, 2013
01:57 PM

It is in BJP's interest to desist from attempting to form a minority governement. With general elections just 6 months away, it should look for a assembly reelection and make it a bipolar contest.

K.Suresh, Bangalore
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