New Delhi: Deserted by former allies, BJP is cobbling together a new alliance with smaller parties in Tamil Nadu for the 16 May Assembly election and will decide its first list of candidates on Thursday.
The party, which has been a marginal player in Tamil Nadu, will decide the first list of its candidates on Thursday after its state election committee meets in Chennai, party's poll in charge for the state and Union minister, Prakash Javadekar said on Wednesday.
"BJP, along with our friends, Indiya Jananayaka Katchi (IJK), New Justice Party (NJP) and some other parties who are willing to come with us, is contesting (polls). Our election committee of the state will meet tomorrow to finalise the candidates.
"We are going ahead with our campaign. Rumours were there or floating (that) BJP is contesting on its own and with its friends who are coming with us. Tomorrow we are having election committee meeting and day after tomorrow, the Tamil Nadu team will come to Delhi. First batch of tickets will be decided tomorrow," he said.
Underlining that every party has the right to have alliance, Javadekar said there is a "multi-cornered" contest for the 16 May Assembly polls this time which BJP welcomes.
"As promised before, BJP is contesting under the BJP leadership and we are going ahead as BJP plus," he said, without naming any leaders.
Asked about BJP failing to keep Vijayakant's DMDK in its fold, Javadekar said, "In Lok Sabha, many parties came together. That time whole context was different. When there is a state election, every party has to take a call. Today we are going as BJP plus."
Vijayakant-led DMDK on Wednesday struck an alliance with the four-party People's Welfare Front for the 16 May Assembly election with the actor-turned-politician being declared as the chief ministerial candidate of the tie-up.
As per the agreement between these parties, DMDK will contest 124 seats and the remaining 110 will be shared by PWF constituents — MDMK, CPI(M), CPI and VCK.
Javadekar said, "People of Tamil Nadu love Prime Minister Narendra Modi and BJP has a clear-cut programme."
Questioning as to what the Dravidian parties did for Tamil Nadu, he said there is an alternative for the state as people are voting for BJP in numbers. "We will campaign vigorously," he said.