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Sheila Dikshit In, Kapil Sibal Out as Congress Declares Six Candidates for Delhi in Snub to AAP

News18.com

Last Updated: April 22, 2019, 17:23 IST

File photo of late Congress leader Sheila Dikshit.

File photo of late Congress leader Sheila Dikshit.

The Congress has fielded former Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit from North-East Delhi, Ajay Maken from New Delhi and JP Agarwal from Chandni Chowk.

New Delhi: The Congress on Monday announced the names of six candidates for Delhi Lok Sabha seats, officially shutting the doors on an alliance with the Aam Aadmi Party after months of hectic parleys.

The Congress has fielded former Delhi chief minister Sheila Dikshit from North-East Delhi, Ajay Maken from New Delhi and JP Agarwal from Chandni Chowk. It has also fielded Arvinder Singh Lovely from East Delhi, Rajesh Lilothia from North-West Delhi and Mahbal Mishra from West Delhi. Senior leader Kapil Sibal's name, however, did not figure on the list.

Dikshit, while talking to the media, said she would do the best to fulfil the responsibility given to her. “I’ve contested from here earlier, I know the people here and they know me. We had started Metro from here, our reputation is of working for the people,” she said.

The announcement of candidates came after talks between the AAP and the Congress failed as the Rahul Gandhi-led party wanted a tie-up only in Delhi while the AAP wanted the alliance to be forged in Haryana as well.

The Arvind Kejriwal-led party on Sunday accused the Congress of "wasting" its time over an alliance in Delhi, Haryana and Chandigarh. "We even postponed the filing of nominations of AAP candidates but now all our six candidates in Delhi will file their nominations on Monday and we will also launch a 'Pol-Khol Abhiyan' against the Congress," senior AAP leader Gopal Rai said.

Rai said the Congress was giving an impression that the AAP refused to form an alliance. “But the fact is whichever seat sharing formula the Congress proposed we agreed to it in Haryana, Delhi and Chandigarh and even then they backtracked,” he said.

Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said Saturday that the Congress first proposed 6:3:1 seat sharing formula to the AAP in Haryana where six seats would be for the Congress, three for the JJP and one seat for the AAP. "Our decision to form an alliance with the Congress was to stop the Modi-Shah duo," he said.

“The Congress has zero presence in Delhi even then they want nearly half of the seats. With that logic, the Congress should form an alliance in Punjab and Haryana too. We have 20 MLAs and four MPs in Punjab then why can't an alliance be formed with us," Sisodia asked on Saturday.

The Congress, on its part, was split over tying up with the AAP, with Delhi unit chief Dikshit making her displeasure known. She had called AAP a “small party” that would “come and go”.

Delhi votes on May 12 and the last date for withdrawing nominations is April 26.