A day after a recording of a conversation between former AAP MLA Rajesh Garg and Arvind Kejriwal emerged where the Chief Minister appeared to be asking the legislator to “break the Congress”, another recording surfaced late on Thursday night in which the party chief seems to be saying that “Muslims are watching that it is only the AAP that can stop the juggernaut of Modi”.
The sting was reportedly recorded when Kejriwal was in conversation with members of the AAP minority wing Shahid Azad, who was part of the AAP minority cell headed by Irfanullah Khan, a former AAP candidate who was later denied a ticket, said, “The point of this recording is that even Arvind Kejriwal disregards the feelings of Muslims, just like any other leader does.
Moreover, there is no respect for party processes. On November 24, the party’s minority wing met and decided that because of the shortage of minority representation in Parliament and Assembly, there should be proportional representation of Muslims in ticket distribution. It was also decided that before deciding tickets the minority wing should be consulted. It is based on the first demand that we asked for 11 seats for Muslims. But Arvind Kejriwal did not respect processes and the voice of minorities within his party. Many people in the room were recording this conversation which happened in the month of December.”
In the recording, Kejriwal seems to be arguing against “making up the numbers” by giving Muslims 11 seats. The voice on the tape, purportedly Kejriwal’s says, “The 7 muslim seats that are there, if you put Muslims there, it will get polarised… BJP will win…If you are thinking that 11 seats Muslims should get, numbers should be made up… Muslims are watching that if there is anyone who can stop the Modi rath, then it is the AAP than can do it, that is the biggest hope in front of them. What is the first priority… nobody can stop Modi’s rath, one after the another they are forming governments…”
An AAP leader said, “We have not verified the tape at all. But even if it was true, there is nothing wrong about it. In fact, in the recording Kejriwal is arguing against giving tickets based on religion, and reiterating that AAP is the hope against communal politics.”
Friday is also set to see another recording to be revealed, with Congress MLA Asif Muhammad Khan threatening to release a video where he alleges that senior AAP leader Sanjay Singh is offering him a ministerial position to “break the Congress” and support the AAP from the outside at a home in 2014. Asif had said on Wednesday that he didn’t wish to release the recording of Singh offering him a Cabinet berth as the “the meeting had taken place at the residence of a senior journalist… who was acting as a go-between and I didn’t want to put him in any trouble”.
On Thursday, he said, “If AAP is challenging me to release the sting, then I will. They haven’t left me any choice.” On his part Singh has maintained that while he met Khan, he offered no inducement, whether monetary or otherwise.