Aam Aadmi Party leader Gopal Rai on Thursday said that their party will contest the upcoming Lok Sabha elections alone. He also said as quoted by news agency ANI, "For Congress, their arrogance is bigger than national interest, it is visible from recent statements of Punjab CM and Sheila Dikshitji." It was being widely speculated that the AAP would contest the elections with the Congress to pip the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP). Rai's statement has put all such speculations to rest.
Three-time Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit on Wednesday had said there is no talk of alliance with the Arvind Kejriwal-led party in the capital city. Dikshit, who took charge of the Congress Delhi unit on Wednesday, further said both the BJP and AAP are an equal challenge to them and the party will meet the challenges together.
In an apparent reference to the amendment, proposed in the Delhi Assembly, demanding a withdrawal of Rajiv Gandhi's Bharat Ratna award in December last year, the senior Congress leader said, "The way they talked about Rajiv Gandhi in the Assembly... we were hurt by it and it was not right. There have been no talks with AAP".
The change of guard in the Congress' Delhi unit is significant as it may play a crucial role in the upcoming General Elections due by May. Dikshit was appointed as the Delhi party unit head by Congress president Rahul Gandhi on Thursday. Devender Yadav, Rajesh Lilothia and Haroon Yusuf were appointed as working presidents to assist the former Delhi chief minister.
"The meeting focused on setting priorities and fixing responsibilities of office-bearers in view of the approaching Lok Sabha elections. The ways to strengthen the party unit were also discussed in the meeting," the party leaders said.