While speculations have been rife about an alliance between the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and the Congress ahead of the upcoming Lok Sabha Elections 2019, three-time Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit on Wednesday 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.
Meanwhile, sources said most of the party leaders believe Congress is "prepared" to challenge the BJP on its own in the upcoming general elections. A final decision on Congress' alliance with other parties will be taken by the committee headed by A K Antony, they added.
Dikshit's appointment as Delhi Congress chief came after Ajay Maken in early January resigned from his post citing health reasons.