Congress to stake claim to form govt in Haryana

After getting letter of support from the seventh independent legislator in its kitty, the Congress will stake claim before Haryana
Governor Jagannath Pahadia to form the next government in the state.

The seventh legislator, Prahlad Singh, said that he would go with the Congress. Six independents had already pledged their support to the party for the formation of the next government.

Haryana Congress president Phool Chand Mullana will meet the Haryana Governor shortly with letter of support from independents, according to Congress sources.

On Thursday, the Congress bagged 40 seats in the state’s assembly poll, far below its confident expectations, falling short of the halfway mark in the 90-member assembly.

Chief minister Bhupinder Singh Hooda will lead the Congress delegation to the governor.

The Congress high command has still not made it clear whether Hooda will again be the party’s choice for chief minister.

The names of union minister Selja, Haryana forests and tourism minister Kiran Chaudhary and power minister Randeep Surjewala are also doing the rounds for the post.

The sources said that senior Congress leaders from the state and in New Delhi were also negotiating with Haryana Janhit Congress leaders Kuldeep Bishnoi and his father Bhajan Lal, a former Congress chief minister of the state.

The seven independents and the HJC, which has six legislators, hold the key to the formation of the next government in the state.

The HJC is unlikely to support Hooda, who had pipped Bhajan Lal to the post after the latter led the Congress to a massive win in the February 2005 assembly poll. The HJC could also seek the post of deputy chief minister for Bishnoi if both sides work out an arrangement.