Smarting from a judicial setback, the AAP has decided to aggressively push for full statehood in its campaign for the 2019 Lok Sabha elections. As part of the strategy, CM Arvind Kejriwal is leading from the front through frequent social media posts, while also raising the issue in public.
Right after the Supreme Court’s decision to refer the issue of transfer and posting of bureaucrats to a larger bench, Kejriwal had indicated that the statehood issue will witness a renewed thrust from the AAP as judicial routes have come a cropper.
The party has formed state and zonal committees to spearhead the movement. It also aims to rope in the youth, for which university-level committees have been constituted, AAP Delhi convenor Gopal Rai said. Separate teams have been formed for North, East, West, South, Kalkaji and Outer zones of the capital, Rai announced Wednesday.
On Wednesday, Kejriwal addressed PM Narendra Modi directly, saying he should ensure that “injustice” is no longer meted out to the people of Delhi. “You had promised to the people of Delhi that you would grant full statehood to Delhi. Kindly do it sir…,” Kejriwal tweeted.
The AAP chief made the remark in response to a tweet made by Modi, wherein he greeted the people of Arunachal Pradesh on their statehood day.
Rai also referred to BJP leaders who spoke in favour of the demand over the years: “One of the founding members of the BJP, L K Advani, as Union Home Minister, had introduced the statehood for Delhi Bill in the Lok Sabha in August 2003. Does the BJP believe Advani had made a mistake?”
Meanwhile, BJP leaders and Union Ministers Vijay Goel and Harsh Vardhan hit back, accusing AAP of trying to “divert public attention from its failures”.