The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Sunday announced a five-member committee here to screen its 2017 Punjab election candidates and another 16-member team to shortlist five probables from each constituency.
At a joint press conference here, AAP Punjab convener Sucha Singh Chhotepur and state affairs in-charge Sanjay Singh said the names of all 117 contenders would be out by June 30 and the first list would be out by the end of this month or May first week. Besides Chhotepur and Sanjay Singh, the screening committee includes Durgesh Pathak and MPs Bhagwant Mann and Sadhu Singh. Pathak, from the AAP’s central committee in Delhi, has been working in Punjab for almost a year now.
These five leaders are also the part of the 16-member campaign committee with Sukhpal Khaira, Himmat Singh Shegill, Baljinder Kaur, Jagtar Singh Sanghera, Buta Singh Ashaant, Kultar Singh, Gurpreet Singh Ghuggi, Yami Gautam, Harjot Singh Bains, SS Kang, and Karanveer Singh Tiwana also on board. They said leaders with corruption taint or criminal history would not get the party ticket.
Sanjay Singh asked aspirants not to be fooled by people claiming to buy them AAP ticket. “The selections will be transparent and winnability will be the only criteria. If anybody asks for money, bring him or her to our notice,” he added. He claimed that the popularity graph of the AAP was rising to the level where the party could look forward to making a clean sweep in Punjab and “breaking its Delhi record”.
‘Demolition at Delhi gurdwara: Blame BJP’
For the demolition of the piau (water kiosk) at Gurdwara Sis Ganj in Delhi, the AAP leaders put the onus on the Bharatiya Janata Party that was in power in the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD). The AAP leaders blamed the Congress and the Akalis for the judicial tangle on the Sutlej-Yamuna Link (SYL) canal issue. “The erstwhile Congress government of Indira Gandhi laid its foundation and the Akali Dal led by Parkash Singh Badal constructed the canal,” said Bhagwant Mann, in response to a question.