Chandni Chowk MLA Alka Lamba joined the Congress Friday, months after she had a fallout with the AAP leadership over a Delhi Assembly resolution on stripping former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi of his Bharat Ratna.
Lamba said she joined the Congress at 10 Janpath in the presence of the party’s working president Sonia Gandhi. “I met Rahul Gandhi at his residence before that,” she said. “Rahul reached out to me after the Bharat Ratna row, after he saw that I continue to hold the Congress ideology dear.”
The Assembly witnessed a row last December, when a resolution was introduced by AAP MLAs demanding that Rajiv’s Bharat Ratna be withdrawn over the 1984 anti-Sikh riots.
The AAP, which was then in talks with the Congress for an alliance in the Lok Sabha polls, later claimed the resolution was never passed. Lamba claimed she was targeted by the party for opposing the resolution.
“I could not join the BJP because of major ideological differences. I am happy the Congress has reposed faith in me once again… I expressed my wish to contest from Chandni Chowk,” Lamba, who spent 20 years with the Congress before switching to the AAP, said.
She also tweeted: @ArvindKejriwal Ji, your spokespersons asked me as per your desire, with the full arrogance that the Party will accept my resignation even on Twitter. So kindly accept my resignation from primary membership of the ‘Aam Aadmi Party’, which is now a ‘Khas Aadmi Party’.
Former Delhi Congress chief Ajay Maken said Lamba has long organisational experience, since she has been active in politics, including as a student. She was elected DUSU president as an NSUI candidate in 1995.
“The Congress will benefit with her coming to the fold,” Maken said. He also took a dig at the AAP, saying that resignations of leaders “shows there is disenchantment within the party”.
AAP did not react to the move.