Harsh Vardhan promises honest govt, says BJP is united

An extremely humbled Dr Harsh Vardhan thanked the BJP for nominating him as the party`s chief ministerial candidate for the Delhi Assembly polls.

PTI| Updated: Oct 23, 2013, 21:48 PM IST

New Delhi: Anointed as BJP`s chief ministerial face just six weeks ahead of polls to take on Congress` Sheila Dikshit and AAP`s Arvind Kejriwal, Harsh Vardhan on Wednesday said his top priority is to galvanise the party, which has been grappling with infighting, and promised an honest and people-friendly government.

Exuding confidence of electoral victory, Vardhan, who won the bitter race within Delhi BJP for the CM candidature, said all the party leaders and workers are "going to put their heart and soul" to make BJP victorious in the December 4 polls.

"Leaders and workers in Delhi are going to put their heart and soul together to see that the corrupt Congress is ousted and we have a government which is people-friendly, thoroughly transparent, honest and committed to deliver and take care of the woes of people," he said.

The 59-year-old ENT surgeon, who is known to share a very cordial relationship with RSS, denied that there was any infighting in the party and said all the leaders were working unitedly towards the sole goal of defeating the "corrupt Sheila Dikshit" dispensation.

"There is no infighting in the party. We all are united and working with the singular aim of defeating the Congress government. We are confident of our victory in the elections," Vardhan told a news agency.

The four-time MLA from Krishna Nagar constituency, who is known for disarming simplicity, said he will work closely with Delhi BJP Chief Vijay Goel and other senior leaders of the party.

"Individuals and positions are not important. What is important is ideology and vision of the party. As a medium of the party, I have been given responsibility to safeguard the people`s interest in coming days. I will try my best to live up to people`s expectations," the former Delhi health minister said.

He stressed that BJP will fight the election on the plank of proving a clean and corruption free government.

"I want to assure people of Delhi that we will free them from the corrupt Congress government first in Delhi and then at the Centre," he said. Asked about challenges facing the city, Harsh Vardhan identified "mis-governance", corruption, pollution, vanishing green spaces, water shortage and high power tariff as some of the key issues of concern.

Describing himself as a true "Delhiite" he said, the government must give equal opportunity to all sections in the city to "grow and flourish".

"Delhi is my home, I have always lived here. I take pride in its history and am aware of the important role Delhi and its people have in shaping the future of India. Today, Delhi is home to some 17 million people."

"The city attracts talented men and women from all over India and they set up permanent home here. I am one of those who believe that Delhi is everybody`s and all people, regardless of cultural or religious background, are welcome here," he said.

He said the national capital must be made a role model to address various challenges including environment protection and good governance.

"We, as Delhiites, must hold out a model for civil society traditions, environment friendliness and clean, corruption-free life. Delhi must be regarded some day as a world city, not just in terms of infrastructure and amenities, but also as a home to all people," he said.