4:43 pm - Sunday November 8, 2015

BJP opposes Kiran Bedi’s bid for Delhi CM

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Kiran Bedi congratulates Kejriwal, says he is determined person
Kiran Bedi congratulates Kejriwal, says he is determined person

In recent days, Kiran Bedi has repeatedly signalled her eagerness to join the BJP in time to lead the party in the Delhi elections. She had earlier tweeted “Let not a single vote go waste! Delhi must reap full rewards of ModiSarkar!” In another tweet she said “I no more rule out entering Indian political service on capability basis. I am moving towards some flexibility in this.”

When directly asked if she would be willing to lead the BJP charge in Delhi, Kiran Bedi said, “I will consider myself to be ready for it if such an offer is made. If they ask me then I will accept it. I had refused earlier when they asked, but now I will accept.” But Bedi’s new found aspiration to become BJP’s chief ministerial candidate nominee in Delhi has not gone down well with the party leaders. They are deeply resentful for two reasons – without being even a member of the BJP she is aiming for the topmost executive position. Second, it comes after the parliamentary election results, and there is no denying the Modi wave swept across nation, Delhi included. She is vying for the job now that it is a ‘no risk, all gain’ proposition. Delhi BJP president, Dr Harshvardhan, now an MP who was party’s chief ministerial candidate last year, told Firstpost, “See as far as my latest knowledge of state of affairs in my party goes this issue, (Kiran Bedi) is a non issue”. Few other senior leaders had similar response: a clear `No’ to Bedi’s chief ministerial ambition. But that does not mean there will be resistance to her joining the BJP. The party leaders objections relate only to leading the party in the Delhi elections and vying for the chief minister’s post. “You don’t offer such primacy of position to a fresh entrant to the party,” said another BJP leader. Sources said Bedi was offered a ticket in both assembly and parliamentary elections over the past year, but she refused. She perhaps was unsure of BJP’s prospects and thus didn’t want to take a risk. “She wanted a zero risk situation. She turned us away when we asked her to join the party and lend her name to our campaign. Now that Modi wave has swept the nation, the foot soldiers tireless works have yielded the harvest, she wants to thrive on it,” a woman BJP leader said. Sources, however, insist Bedi will still have a lot to gain by joining the party. She could be offered a position in the government with a degree of functional autonomy where her experience and expertise in matters of dealing with the crime, police reforms, prisons, women and child welfare could be utilised. Or she may be asked to head a task force or a panel where she will have lot to contribute. A BJP leader said Bedi credentials as an honest upright office, as an anti-corruption activist and as a mass mobiliser is well established. She is a nationalist and has the expertise to serve the nation in a more challenging role. The party would like to utilise her vast experience. “I understand that there is already some talk of giving her a post where she could be assigned some challenging tasks. This could either be attached to some ministry or could be an autonomous position. Such position would come only with clearance of Narendra Modi. Some technocrats and experts like E Shreedharan for Railway and Suresh Prabhu for water could be inducted in various capacities.”

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