Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday said the “heavy BJP machinery” deployed during campaigning made the MCD polls the Aam Aadmi Party’s toughest election so far and accused the saffron party of trying to “buy” its councillors.
The AAP national convener claimed that the BJP has started telephoning his party’s councillors and offering them up to Rs 20 lakh each.
“This election was very, very tough. A few people say it was an easy election, but it was not. The way they conspired against us and the way they used state machinery against us, it was the toughest elections we ever contested,” Mr Kejriwal said in his address to the newly elected councillors.
“Heavy BJP machinery deployed during campaigning made the Municipal Corporation of Delhi (MCD) polls the toughest election for AAP so far,” he added.
Referring to purported videos of jailed minister Satyender Jain getting special treatment, the chief minister said the BJP pressured the media to spread “propaganda against us”.
“They (BJP) will try to buy you. They have started calling the councillors. Somebody is being offered Rs 10 lakh and some Rs 20 lakh,” the AAP national convenor said.
“I am completely sure no one from you will fall for their offer. However, we need to expose them. Put your phone on recording and whenever there is a call from them, record it,” he added.
“Despite all the tricks”, Mr Kejriwal said the BJP “could not breach the AAP’s reputation” which it has earned through its work and trust.
“Despite their propaganda, the people voted for us in the MCD. It means people trust what we did and earned in the last few years. The BJP thought people are gullible but they are not,” he said, adding the saffron party’s “propaganda” did not work.
The AAP does positive politics and talks about its work, unlike the BJP which “spreads fake videos and letters” of a jailed conman, he claimed without taking any name.
Several purported videos of Jain meeting visitors and the jail superintendent, eating fruits and vegetables and getting massages in his prison cell have gone viral, giving ammunition to the BJP to attack the AAP.
Earlier, jailed conman Sukesh Chandrashekhar wrote to the Delhi Lieutenant Governor alleging that Jain “extorted” Rs 10 crore from him in 2019 to ensure his safety in prison.
“We do positive politics and talk about our work. The BJP through fake videos and letters of a jailed conman did not allow us to discuss our work narrative,” Mr Kejriwal said.
“Moreover, the way they pressured the media, they scolded the media and twisted its arm, they ran a misinformation campaign against us. There was a new fake video every morning at 9 o’clock,” he alleged.
Speaking at the event, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia said it is going to be a golden era for the MCD.
“…Now we have to clear the mountains of garbage, clean all streets, fix all roads and improve the primary health system,” he said.
AAP’s Delhi convenor Gopal Rai said, “The people have ousted the BJP’s 15-year-long reign in the MCD with a hope of getting their city cleaned…we have to live up to the test.”
On the occasion, the AAP announced the appointment of party leaders Atishi, Saurabh Bhardwaj, Durgesh Pathak and Adil Khan as coordinators and mentors for the councillors and assigned them the responsibility of looking after three districts each.
The AAP on Wednesday wrested power from the BJP in the high-stakes civic polls in the national capital. The Arvind Kejriwal-led party bagged 134 of the 250 wards while the BJP won 104.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
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