Arvind Kejriwal says AAP will campaign for BJP in Lok Sabha polls if Delhi is granted statehood

In a rhetorical speech in the Delhi assembly, chief minister Arvind Kejriwal on Monday announced that the AAP would campaign for the BJP during the 2019 Lok Sabha election if Delhi was granted full statehood.

He also warned that if the Modi government failed to do so, the party would conduct a “BJP, quit Delhi” campaign.

“I want to say to BJP, give full statehood status to Delhi before Lok Sabha polls, every vote of people will go in favour of BJP and we (AAP) will campaign for them in Lok Sabha election,” Kejriwal said in the assembly.

Kejriwal, who has turned the fight for Delhi’s full statehood into a plank for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections, further said if the Narendra Modi-led government acceded to its demand, it would ensure that “each and every vote from Delhi goes in your favour”.

Vidhan Sabha accepted the resolution on full statehood to Delhi on Monday.

On Sunday, Kejriwal announced a city-wide campaign for full statehood to Delhi with the slogan ‘L-G, Delhi Chodo’ (L-G, Quit Delhi).

Addressing party’s ward-level officer-bearers and legislators at his residence in New Delhi, the chief minister equalled the fight for Delhi’s full statehood with the freedom struggle.

In a passionate address, he said Mahatma Gandhi had launched Quit India campaign during the British rule, and the Aam Aadmi Party will run ‘L-G, Delhi Chodo’ campaign.

“We would ask people (during meetings) whether there should be people’s rule or LG’s rule in Delhi. L-G creates hurdles in our every project, be it the CCTV project or doorstep delivery of ration,” he had said.

Elaborating on the campaign, senior AAP leader Gopal Rai had said AAP leaders, MLAs and workers will hold meetings at 300 locations in the national capital from June 17 to June 24 in the first phase of the agitation.

In the second phase, AAP has planned to hold party workers’ convention at Indira Gandhi Indoor Stadium on July 1, where the next course of action will be decided, he had added.

The chief minister also attacked former chief minister and Congress leader Sheila Dikshit, alleging that during her government’s tenure, people were fed up with inflated water and electricity bills, as well as the poor condition of government hospitals.

“During your (Sheila) tenure, your party’s government was at the Centre for ten years and your L-G was also there. I challenge you to run Delhi under Modi’s rule for one year,” Kejriwal tweeted in Hindi.

His comment came in response to Dikshit’s reported statement that she ruled Delhi for 15 years, but never had any conflict with the Centre and L-G during her tenure.

Rai alleged that the BJP and Congress have taken ‘U turn’ on the issue of full statehood to Delhi.