A day after the Aam Aadmi Party leaders told the Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung that they would form the government in Delhi,Arvind Kejriwal on Tuesday finalised his team of ministers that includes his trusted associate Manish Sisodia and five others but was embarrassed with open dissent from a newly-elected MLA over his being kept out of the government.
Kejriwal,who is likely to be sworn-in as Chief Minister on Thursday,sent to Lt Governor a list of six ministers,including the names of Sisodia,a former journalist who won from Patparganj constituency,Rakhi Birla,the giant killer who defeated PWD Minister Rajkumar Chouhan,Somnath Bharti (defeated Women and Child Development Minister Kiran Walia) Saurabh Bhardwaj,Girish Soni and Satendra Jain.
However,in a dissent of sorts,Vinod Kumar Binny,who defeated Health Minister A K Walia of the outgoing Congress government,walked out of a meeting in Arvind Kejriwal’s house after coming to know that he is not among the probable ministers of the new Delhi government.
Going out of Kejriwal’s house,an upset Binny,a former Congress councillor,did not talk to the waiting media. He merely said he may hold a press conference on Wednesday which could be “embarrassing”.
AAP sources said he was upset after his name was removed from the list of probables at the instance of a senior party leader to include the name of Madipur MLA Girish Soni.
Meanwhile,Sisodia denied there was any dissent. He said picking up his team was the Chief Minister’s prerogative.
The sources said efforts were on to pacify him in which leaders including Yogendra Yadav are said to be involved. Speculation is that he could be made the Speaker whose role will be important in a fractious House.
Meanwhile,Kejriwal is understood to have decided to pick up senior IAS officer,Rajendra Kumar as Chief Minister’s Principal Secretary.
Earlier in the day,Kejriwal released a video wherein he explained the party’s position on government formation in Delhi. The effort was an attempt to communicate how,despite taking support from the Congress,they were determined to follow their agenda and pursue promises they made to the people of Delhi.
(With PTI inputs)
On Friday, the first question to the AAP was related to its “anti-national activities”.