AAP rift: Amanatullah quits post after calling Kumar Vishwas BJP-RSS agent
A day after Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal denied rift within the Aam Aadmi Party and called Kumar Vishwas his “younger brother”, senior party leader Manish Sisodia on Monday said the party leadership, including its convener Kejriwal, is “hurt” by the actions of Vishwas.
Speaking after a late night meeting of the party’s political affairs committee (PAC) that also saw AAP’s Okhla MLA Amanatullah Khan resign as a member of the committee, Sisodia said, “Objections were raised over Amanatullah’s statement against Kumar Vishwas. He himself put down the papers and his resignation has been accepted by the party.”
Amantullah had called Vishwas an agent of BJP and RSS, who was allegedly trying to split up the party. Over 30 AAP MLAs had signed a letter urging the top leadership to expel Khan after he alleged Vishwas was plotting a coup against the party for its top leadership.
Sisodia further said the PAC also discussed the matter of Vishwas giving TV interviews and releasing videos.
“There was disappointment over this also. Arvind and other PAC members are sad that people are giving statements outside the party,” he said.
Sisodia said that the party members should talk to Kejriwal and other leaders if they have any objection to the party.
“We have three years to work on Delhi. We need to do that. Because of these statements by various leaders, the confidence of party workers is going down,” he said.
Khan and Vishwas both are members of PAC. While Vishwas gave the PAC a miss, Khan resigned from the committee even as the meeting was underway.
In the public sphere, Kejriwal might be putting up a strong face of unity within the Aam Aadmi Party, but internal rifts are far from over. The constant bickering among its members left the party’s top leadership in a huddle on Monday with both AAP convener Kejriwal and deputy chief minister Manish Sisoda holding a series of meetings.
A key point of discussion was Okhla MLA Amanatullah Khan, who on Sunday levelled allegations of horse trading against senior party leader Kumar Vishwas. More importantly, ties of Kejriwal with Vishwas too seem to be strained now. However, any action against him is ruled out as Kejriwal and Sisodia are trying to sort it out through discussions. One of the founders of the party, Vishwas, has been a close aide of Kejriwal.
Even as Kejriwal defended Vishwas on Twitter by calling him his “brother” and saying “no one” could separate them, sources said the CM is “quite disappointed” with him for speaking to TV channels instead of the party leadership about their internal problems. Following this, Kejriwal also issued a gag order for senior AAP leaders.
“There is no question of Arvind Kejriwal leaving the post of party convener. Amanatullah should apologise for his statement or action should be taken against him,” culture minister Kapil Mishra had told HT.