'Who is Prashant Kishor?': Union Minister Hardeep Singh Puri Asks on Poll Strategist Being Roped in by AAP
The Union housing and urban affairs minister, who is also the co-in-charge of the BJP for the Delhi polls admitted to not knowing Prashant Kishor despite the strategist having worked on PM Narendra Modi's campaign in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls.
File photo of Union Minister for Urban Affairs Hardeep Singh Puri (Image: PTI)
New Delhi: "Who is Prashant Kishor?", Union minister Hardeep Singh Puri asked on Friday, days after the poll strategist's political consultancy firm I-PAC was roped in by the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) ahead of the Delhi Assembly election.
Replying to a question at a press conference here, the Union housing and urban affairs minister, who is also the co-incharge of the BJP for the Delhi polls, said he did not know Kishor personally. "Who is Prashant Kishor?," he asked, when a question was put to him about I-PAC being roped in by the Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP ahead of the Delhi polls, slated to be held early next year.
When reporters told the minister that Kishor was a part of Prime Minister Narendra Modi's campaign in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, he said, "I was not there during that time." "Maybe I should know, but I do not know him (Kishor)," Puri said on being told by reporters that he was also part of the BJP-led National Democratic Alliance (NDA) -- the national vice-president of the Janata Dal (United).
On December 14, Kejriwal had announced that I-PAC had come on board with his party. "Happy to share that Indian-PAC is coming on-board with us. Welcome aboard!" the Delhi chief minister had said in a tweet.
The election to the 70-member Delhi Assembly is due early next year. The national capital is set to witness a three-cornered fight with the AAP, which had won 67 seats in the last Assembly polls, seeking to retain power by defeating the BJP and the Congress.
The I-PAC had used innovative programmes such as "chai pe charcha" in the 2014 campaign for Modi. The firm worked on a number of successful campaigns since 2014, including the one that brought JD(U) supremo and
Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar to power in the state in 2015. It also helped Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister YS Jagan Mohan Reddy win the Assembly polls and put up a good show in the general election this year.
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