On row over conman Sukesh Chandrashekar, Arvind Kejriwal cites Morbi; BJP says 'AAP conned'

Updated on Nov 01, 2022 02:10 PM IST

Gujarat bridge collapse was mentioned by Arvind Kejriwal as he hit out at the BJP.

Arvind Kejriwal has dismissed reports linking Sukesh Chandrashekhar to the AAP. (HT File)
Arvind Kejriwal has dismissed reports linking Sukesh Chandrashekhar to the AAP. (HT File)
By, New Delhi

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Tuesday rubbished claims linking conman Sukesh Chandrasekhar - accused in a 200 crore fraud - to the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) as he called the allegations a tactic to deflect attention from the bridge collapse incident in Gujarat's Morbi where over 130 people, including more than 40 children, have died. As he sharpened attack on the ruling BJP in Gujarat, BJP leader Sambit Patra hit out at the AAP, saying that "a conman was conned".

“On Sunday, the Morbi incident happened. Suddenly today, the bridge collapse incident was no longer being discussed on the TV channels and it was all about Sukesh Chandrashekar. Does it not seem like a tactic to distract from the tragedy?” Arvind Kejriwal asked during a briefing. “What can be more blatant than this? Nearly 150 people have died but all channels are discussing a conman.”

Minutes later, the BJP’s Sambit Patra held a press conference. “A conman has been conned. By whom? The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) and (Delhi minister) Satyendar Jain.” Referring to Sukesh as a “thug”, Patra said: “He is an accused in 15 cases. A letter has revealed that Jain and the conman are friends. He has said in the letter that he has been associated with the party since 2015 and that he was told that he would be established as a leader in the South.”

Patra said the conman - in his letter - claimed that he paid crores to the AAP. “In 2017, as per Sukesh Chandrashekar, when he was in Tihar, Jain met him. In 2019, Jain’s secretary told him that protection money of 2 crore a month would be needed.”

While the conman was running a syndicate from inside the jail, Patra alleged, the AAP was running a syndicate from “outside the jail.”

This is the latest flashpoint in the AAP vs BJP standoff as Gujarat warms up for assembly elections.

Conman Sukesh Chandrashekhar was reported to have written to Delhi LG Vinai Kumar Saxena. Responding amid the speculation, his lawyer - AK Singh - told news agency ANI: "There is no threat to my client from any political party, including the AAP to raise allegation. Because of his disclosure statement,105 cops (are) facing enquiry, and some high-ranking officers (have been) arrested. So he's facing threat in jail to retract statement. We've filed a writ petition in the Delhi High Court and demanded a CBI enquiry. There's a demand to withdraw that also. We've told everything in the writ petition. I was instructed by Sukesh to file a complaint before the LG."

(With inputs from ANI)

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