Claiming that AAP was being “selectively targeted”, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia Friday said the three-member panel which recommended the recovery of Rs 97 crore from the Delhi government for expenditure on advertisements “does not have any mandate to do so”. Earlier this week, Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal directed the chief secretary to recover the amount from AAP, which it had allegedly “splurged” on advertisements in violation of Supreme Court guidelines, within 30 days.
Emphasising that the Delhi government is not alone in communicating through advertisements, Sisodia said, “All governments issue advertisements and hold summits in other states or abroad to showcase their work. We have also tried to communicate Delhi’s good business environment in other states.” He also said that the “neutral, impartial committee” does not have the power to pass such an order and that AAP cannot be singled out. “The court had also ordered that the committee should comprise people with impeachable neutrality and impartiality. However, two members of the committee have close links with the BJP,” Sisodia alleged.