New Delhi: The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) named former cop and social activist Kiran Bedi, who joined the party recently, as their face for the upcoming Delhi Assembly Elections on Monday.
Addressing the press here, party president Amit Shah said, "The BJP parliamentary board has decided that the party will contest the elections in Delhi under Kiran Bedi and she will also be our CM candidate."
He also said that Bedi would contest from Krishna Nagar Assembly seat in East Delhi, considered a BJP stronghold.
At the same time Shah rubbished reports of dissent within Delhi BJP over Bedi's entry into the party.
The decision was taken at the BJP parliamentary board meeting, which was attended by Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Home Minister Rajnath Singh, Finance Minister Arun Jaitley, External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj among others.
Reacting to the news, Bedi, while talking to the media, thanked the party president.
Meanwhile, BJP top brass today cautioned party MP Manoj Tiwari who had criticised Bedi openly.
Manoj Tiwari, one of the seven BJP MPs of Delhi, had said that Kiran Bedi "is a party worker" and must conduct herself like one.
"I didn't like the way she spoke to BJP workers a few days ago. I wasn't there...but this is the feedback I've got from workers. She should be humble, she has been brought on as a BJP worker. She is not the Chief Ministerial candidate so far," he told reporters.
Sources claimed Tiwari got a call from a senior leader who asked him to explain his remarks after an upset Kiran Bedi complained to the party leadership. Interestingly, Tiwari was also one of the two MPs who skipped Bedi's tea party on Sunday for parliamentarians from Delhi.
By asking him to follow the decisions taken by the apex leadership, the party has also given a message to Delhi leaders who have been seething with resentment since Bedi, 65, joined the party last week.
The fight for Delhi is crucial for the BJP and a win here would cap off a brilliant run in Assembly Elections in Haryana, Maharashtra, Jharkhand and J&K.
On the other hand, the rivals Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and Congress have already declared their candidates, many of whom have started campaigning and filed their nominations.
Elections to 70-member Delhi Assembly will be held on February 7 and results would be announced on February 10. Nominations can be filed up to January 22.