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Lok Sabha elections 2019: Arvind Kejriwal woos Congress in Haryana after Delhi pact seems unlikely

AAP national convener and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal Wednesday appealed to the Congress to join the proposed alliance between his party and that of Jannayak Janta Party (JJP) in Haryana for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls.

lok sabha elections Updated: Mar 14, 2019 09:12 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
New Delhi
While Arvind Kejriwal said the alliance could together defeat the BJP on all 10 seats in Haryana, the JJP was quick to decline the offer, citing ideological differences with the Congress. (Raj K Raj/HT Photo)

AAP national convener and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal Wednesday appealed to the Congress to join the proposed alliance between his party and that of Jannayak Janta Party (JJP) in Haryana for the upcoming Lok Sabha polls.

While Kejriwal said the alliance could together defeat the BJP on all 10 seats in Haryana, the JJP was quick to decline the offer, citing ideological differences with the Congress.

Kejriwal’s comment came at a time when speculations have been rife about a possible alliance between the AAP and the Congress for the seven seats in Delhi. While the AAP has been keen on an alliance, the Congress has officially refused it so far.

Speaking to reporters at the AAP headquarters, Kejriwal Wednesday said, “In Delhi, we do not need the Congress. Here, we will alone win all seats,” he said.

Congress president Rahul Gandhi had, on Monday, ruled out any alliance with the AAP in Delhi and asked his party workers in the capital to win all seven Lok Sabha seats.

Justifying his proposal for Haryana, the AAP chief said such an alliance in the neighbouring state will help “in a big way” to defeat the “Modi-Shah duo” at a national-level. “Today, I am offering a proposal to Rahul Gandhi ji. In Haryana, if AAP, JJP and Congress fight the elections together then the alliance will be able to defeat BJP on all 10 seats there,” he said. The recently launched JJP is a breakaway of the Indian National Lok Dal.

However, within minutes after Kejriwal’s comments, the JJP issued a statement, saying it can “never have any truck” with the Congress. “The JJP has been formed on the ideology of late Choudhary Devi Lal who has always fought against Congress so JJP will never enter into any alliance with the Congress and will not be part of any alliance which includes Congress,” said KC Bangar, JJP’s national general secretary.

In January, the Aam Aadmi Pary had supported Jannayak Janta Party in the Jind bypoll in Haryana and both parties have been in talks for an alliance for the assembly elections scheduled later this year.

Asked about Kejriwal’s comments on Wednesday, Congress’s chief spokesperson Randeep Singh Surjewala said, “that may be his viewpoint.”

“Kejriwal is free to think whatever he wants but the ground reality is different from his imagination. Our countrymen ... will vote for the BJP again,” Haryana chief minister Manohar Lal Khattar told the media.

(With agency inputs)

First Published: Mar 14, 2019 09:12 IST