Recent opinion polls seem to have rattled the BJP leadership as Delhi prepares to go to polls.
The ABP-Nielsen poll today is the latest in the series which seems to be responsible for various voices emerging from top BJP sources indicating that the party had indeed decided to opt for Dr Harshvardhan giving its Delhi chief Vijay Goel a miss.
While a formal announcement is awaited and expected in a couple of days, there was a bit of a flutter today with a series of text messages doing the rounds from different sources in the saffron party indicating that the party had finally decided to throw its weight behind a leader who has a clean image as its CM candidate
An ABP-Nielsen poll two months back showed the poll predictions for Delhi as BJP 32, Cong 27, AAP 8.
As the elections approach, there is finally a realisation in the top leadership of the party that Arvind Kerjriwal's crusade against corruption and the lack of a credible leader with a clean image from the BJP was responsible for the disgruntled voters casting their lot with AAP.
It is not just the seat projections, but also the image of the leaders which is said to be behind the decision.
Two months back, an ABP-Nielsen poll showed the following as leading chief ministerial choices: BJP's Vijay Goel 26 %, Arvind Kejriwal 24% and Sheila Dikshit 22%
The latest poll shows the chief ministerial choices as: Vijay Goel 27%, Arvind Kejriwal 32%, Sheila Dikshit 27%
Thus while there is a marginal increase of 1% for Vijay Goel in the last two months, what seems to be tilting the balance against him is the rise in popularity by 5% for Sheila Dikshit and 8% for Arvind Kejriwal.
It is this, say analysts, that is responsible for the messages from the faction-ridden party in Delhi that its leadership had chosen Dr Harsh Vardhan, while Mr Vijay Goel had been "dumped".