Putting to rest all the speculation and controversy surrounding Lokhit Party leader Gopal Kanda, the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) on Saturday said it was not going to take the support of Sirsa MLA, who is an accused in two abetment-to-suicide cases.
Following the hung assembly in Haryana, Kanda had claimed to have the support of at least 5 MLAs and flown to Delhi to extend support to the saffron party. Kanda's arrival in Delhi had led to a huge outcry from the Opposition over his past record.
Speaking to the reporters after the election of Manohar Lal Khattar as the leader of the legislative party, Law Minister Ravi Shankar Prasad said the BJP was not taking any support from Gopal Kanda. "I want to clarify one thing. The party is not taking any support from Gopal Kanda. The matter is dead," he said.
On Friday, the BJP stitched an alliance with the 10-month-old Jannayak Janata Party (JJP) and will stake claim to form the government on Sunday.
At a press conference on Friday night, BJP President Amit Shah announced that his JJP counterpart, Dushyant Chautala, will be the deputy chief minister, while Manohar Lal Khattar will once again lead Haryana as the chief minister.
"Going by the mandate of the voters of Haryana, leaders of both parties have decided that BJP and JJP will form the government together. The chief minister will be from the BJP and deputy chief minister will be from the JJP," Shah said.
The BJP finished with a tally of 40 seats in the assembly, followed by Congress which bagged 31. The JJP emerged as the kingmaker after winning 10 seats.
Kanda had lost assembly elections in 2014, but managed to turn his fortune around this time and has successfully won the election from Sirsa assembly seat by a slender margin of 602 votes.
He has been in surrounded by multiple controversies throughout his public life. He has been accused of abetting the suicide of a young air hostess in 2012 who previously worked with MDLR. The suicide note of the girl has alleged that Kanda harassed and "misused her".
Kanda was arrested on charges of rape, abetment to suicide, criminal conspiracy and criminal intimidation. Six months later, the mother of the girl also committed suicide and she also blamed Kanda and his aides for her suicide. Kanda was granted bail in March 2014. He continues to face trial in the air hostess suicide case.