Party leaders during alliance talks between SAD and BJP (File Photo)
After months of alliance talks with the ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), the Shiromani Akali Dal (SAD) on Thursday announced that it will contest the upcoming Haryana Assembly elections on its own. Assembly election is due in Haryana on October 21, 2019. The counting of votes will be taken up on October 24.
The break in alliance was announced by SAD leader Daljit Cheema, citing 'unethical' induction of lone MLA Balkaur Singh into the BJP, early in the day. "SAD core committee decided that it will contest general elections in Haryana on its own. Describes induction of sitting MLA Balkaur Singh into BJP unethical," Cheema wrote on Twitter.
SAD core committee decided that it will contest general elections in Haryana on its own. Describes induction of sitting MLA Balkaur Singh into BJP unethical.— Dr Daljit S Cheema (@drcheemasad) September 26, 2019
Singh's induction into the BJP in presence of Haryana party chief Subhash Barala on Thursday came as a major embarrassment to the Akalis, who have been long vying for an alliance with the saffron fold in the state. Singh was the only Akali MLA in Haryana who won the Kalanwali Assembly seats on a SAD ticket in 2014.
The alliance talks between the two NDA partners remained at the centre of the political corridor in Haryana for the last few months. Even till Thursday afternoon there were no reports of the duo breaking their ties days ahead of the poll.
However, the snap in ties is not likely to affect the BJP much, with experts suggesting that the party's unprecedented 10 seats victory in the recently concluded Lok Sabha elections in Haryana will help it acheieve its target of two-third majority in the 90-member legislative assembly on its own.
In 2014 Assembly elections too, BJP and SAD contested the polls separately, with the latter shifting its support to Om Prakash Chautala-led Indian National Lok Sal (INLD). Riding on 'Modi wave', the BJP for the first time formed its government in Haryana with win in 47 out of the 90 Assembly seats. While the INLD won 19 seats to emerge as the main opposition in the state, the Congress managed to secure 15 seats only.
In 2009 Assembly polls, the Congress became the single largest party with 40 seats in the state and formed the government with the help of 7 Independents. The INLD won 31 seats whereas the BJP was a marginal player with only 4 seats. The Haryana Janhit Congress (HJC) contested the elections for the first time and won 6 seats.