Chandigarh: Behind the scene lobbying by several chief ministerial aspirants is possibly delaying formation of first-ever BJP government in Haryana despite the saffron party getting a clear majority on its own.
Though officially no reason has been given for the delay in installation of government in the state, party sources said that chief ministerial aspirants, including Haryana unit leader Ram Bilas Sharma, three newly elected first-time MLAs--M L Khattar, Abhimanyu and Om Parkash Dhankar--could be lobbying before senior party leaders in Delhi.
The other names doing rounds here include five-time MLA from Ambala Cantt Anil Vij and BJP leader Rao Inderjit Singh, who switched side from Congress before the Lok Sabha polls.
With the party leadership yet to short list a candidate for the top job, the installation of the BJP government in Haryana, the first since the formation of the state in 1966, is being delayed.
The bureaucracy was expecting that BJP with its clear mandate would quickly take a decision on its first chief minister and the new government would be in place before Diwali.
60-year-old M L Khattar, a new face in electoral politics, was fielded from Karnal Assembly seat from where Prime Minister Narendra Modi launched his poll campaign in the state and he has emerged as the front runner.
A first-time MLA, Khattar has no administrative experience, but he is stated to have been a good RSS organiser for the past 40 years. He won Karnal seat by 63,736 votes.
Ram Bilas Sharma, a Brahmin from Mahendargarh district, was a Cabinet minister in the Bansi Lal-led HVP-BJP government in 1996. After differences with Bansi Lal, Sharma led the party into withdrawing support from HVP and forming the government with Om Parkash Chautala's INLD.
Sharma remained in the background in the last ten years of Bhupinder Singh Hooda rule as BJP could win only six seats in 2000 and the number was reduced to four in the 2009 Assembly elections.
The five-time BJP MLA came into limelight just ahead of the Lok Sabha polls when he was made the state unit leader.
47-year-old Abhimanyu is the Jat face of the party in the state and is stated to have the blessings of BJP President Amit Shah. He served as a Captain in the army for six years.
Abhimanyu is also a first-time legislator. He was party's candidate for Rohtak Lok Sabha seat in 2004, 2005 and 2009. He was also the party's nominee from Narnaund Assembly constituency in 2004, 2005, 2009 before being successful this time.