Senior AAP leader Saurabh Bharadwaj on Thursday lashed out at the leadership of Congress’ Delhi unit accusing them of doing “politics of convenience" on the issue of the Centre’s ordinance on the Delhi services matter.
Addressing a press conference here, Bharadwaj said that while the Delhi Congress is refusing to extend any support to the AAP on the Delhi services issue, former Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit had passed a resolution in the Delhi Assembly in 2002 against the central government ruled by the BJP.
“Sheila Dikshit had condemned the central government orders earlier and said that it is violation of all democratic traditions. She had passed a similar resolution in the Delhi Assembly in 2002 against the Centre that had said they don’t recognise Government of NCT of Delhi and that there can be only one government in Delhi," the Delhi minister said.
“What the Delhi Congress is doing is politics of convenience and is working for the BJP. The statements are coming from such leaders who have been sidelined by the party," Bharadwaj said.
Senior Congress leader Ajay Maken responded to Bharadwaj’s charges and said that Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal wants to gain a “unique privilege previously denied to Chief Ministers like Sheila Dikshit, Madan Lal Khurana, Sahib Singh Verma, and Sushma Swaraj".
“Never claimed that Sheila Dikshit Ji didn’t seek full Statehood or expanded authority. My assertion was that Kejriwal wants to gain an unique privilege previously denied to Chief Ministers like Sheila Dikshit, Madan Lal Khurana, Sahib Singh Verma, and Sushma Swaraj," Maken said in a Twitter post.
Maken further said that the AAP “should retract their demand", if they “comprehend the essence" of National Capital Territory.
“Delhi represents the National Capital and belongs to the entire country. Hence, the principle of cooperative federalism doesn’t apply here. As such, the constitution refers to Delhi not merely as Delhi, but as the ‘National Capital Territory of Delhi’. If AAP followers comprehend the essence of ‘National Capital Territory’, they should respectfully retract their demands,” Maken tweeted.
He said that the AAP should focus on improving the city instead of “seeking more authority to mask inefficiency".
“Patel, Nehru, Shastri, Narasimha Rao, Vajpayee, to Manmohan Singh till 2014, none were granted what AAP is currently demanding from Modi," the Congress leader said.
Earlier, Maken had strongly opposed extending any support to Kejriwal on the issue saying the Congress should not oppose the proposed legislation to be brought in Parliament on the Delhi services issue, replacing the ordinance promulgated by the Centre last week.
Earlier, Congress leader Sandeep Dikshit had also said that AAP’s allegations that it is not being allowed to work in Delhi is merely “an excuse" and a reflection of its “uselessness".
Kejriwal has sought the support of various political parties on the issue of the Centre’s ordinance on the administration of services in the national capital and on Tuesday, he met West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee. He also sought Bihar Chief Minister Nitish Kumar’s support during their meeting earlier this week.
He is appealing to other parties too for support on the issue. The AAP has said that rejecting the proposed legislation to replace the ordinance will be a litmus test for the opposition unity.
The ordinance for setting up a National Capital Civil Service Authority for the transfer of IAS and DANICS cadre officers and disciplinary proceedings against them virtually negated the May 11 Supreme Court order that ruled in favour of the AAP government.(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed - PTI)