AAP MLAs meet Kejriwal’s wife, back his continuation as Delhi chief minister | Latest News India - Hindustan Times
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AAP MLAs meet Kejriwal’s wife, back his continuation as Delhi chief minister

ByAlok KN Mishra
Apr 02, 2024 02:04 PM IST

An AAP lawmaker said they met Sunita Kejriwal to discuss the “prevailing political situation” and the BJP’s alleged attempts to poach them

Ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) lawmakers on Tuesday met jailed chief minister Arvind Kejriwal’s wife, Sunita Kejriwal, and backed his continuation as Delhi’s top elected official and running the government from Tihar Jail, people aware of the matter said.

Sunita Kejriwal, Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal’s wife. (X)
Sunita Kejriwal, Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal’s wife. (X)

“The MLAs [members of legislative assembly] told Sunita Kejriwal that the 20 million people of Delhi are standing with Arvind Kejriwal...[he] should not resign at any cost, and run the government of Delhi from jail,” said an AAP functionary. The functionary added that 55 lawmakers attended the meeting while three legislators—Arvind Kejriwal, Manish Sisodia, and Satyendra Jain—are in jail, and four others were out of Delhi.

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The AAP has 62 lawmakers in the 70-member assembly while the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) has the remaining eight.

An AAP lawmaker said they met Sunita Kejriwal to discuss the “prevailing political situation” and the BJP’s alleged attempts to poach them and plans to arrest more AAP leaders.

The meeting was convened two days after Sunita Kejriwal made her first-ever public address on Sunday at a show of strength and unity at Delhi’s Ramlila Maidan of the Opposition Indian National Developmental Inclusive Alliance (INDIA) weeks before the general elections. She called her husband “a lion” who will not be “behind bars” for long.

Sunita Kejriwal, who earlier read out two emotive messages from Arvind Kejriwal, said he remains in the hearts of crores of people across the country.

Delhi BJP chief Virendra Sachdeva said a power struggle was going on within the AAP and no one trusted anyone. “In the court yesterday [Monday] Arvind Kejriwal exposed the names of [ministers] Atishi and Saurabh Bharadwaj in the excise scam. Sunita Kejriwal is indirectly and slowly trying to take over the party because she knows that Arvind Kejriwal has committed corruption and chances of him coming out of jail are nil,” said Sachdeva.

Special judge Kaveri Baweja on Monday remanded Arvind Kejriwal in judicial custody until April 15 in connection with the excise policy case. He is the fourth prominent AAP leader to have been arrested.

The AAP has maintained that ED’s probe in the excise case was part of a political conspiracy to crush the party. On Monday, it alleged the BJP was attempting to destabilise and topple the AAP government.

AAP legislator Rituraj Jha claimed in the Delhi assembly that BJP leaders offered him a Cabinet position and money if he switched parties, and induced 10 more lawmakers to follow suit.

AAP lawmakers meeting with Sunita Kejriwal began hours after AAP minister Atishi claimed the BJP was likely to get her and three other AAP leaders—Saurabh Bharadwaj, Raghav Chadha, and Durgesh Pathak—arrested in the alleged irregularities in the now-scrapped 2021-22 excise policy.

Sachdeva dismissed Atishi’s claims as baseless. “Arvind Kejriwal, AAP, and its leaders are involved in the excise scam. As the investigation is progressing, names of different AAP leaders are emerging, and all of them will face action,” said Sachdeva.

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