Congress leaders from Delhi, Punjab against support to AAP over Centre's ordinance

Congress leaders from Delhi, Punjab against support to AAP over Centre's ordinance
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New Delhi, India: Congress leaders from Delhi and Punjab met here on Tuesday to discuss the Aam Aadmi Party's demand for opposing the Centre's ordinance that effectively nullifies Supreme Court order over control of services in Delhi.

Partap Singh Bajwa, Ajay Maken and Sandeep Dikshit were among the party leaders who participated in the meeting.

Bajwa, who is Congress legislative party leader in the Punjab assembly, accused the AAP government of a witch-hunt against party leaders in the state and opposed extending support to AAP over its demand.

He said AAP has been instrumental in giving a political edge to BJP in some states and Congress should "not protect a wolf in the sheep's clothing".

"@AamAadmiParty & @ArvindKejriwal deserve no support or sympathy from @INCIndia. @AAPPunjab govt has launched ruthless witch-hunt against @INCPunjab leaders and workers and has made their lives hell by misusing the police and investigation agencies," Bajwa said in a tweet.

"I appeal to INC high command to consult the leadership of Punjab, HP, Delhi, Uttarakhand, Gujarat & Karnataka before even considering helping AAP. It was instrumental in giving a political edge to BJP in these states. AAP is the B team of BJP and they are two sides of the same coin. Let's not protect a wolf in the sheep's clothing," he added.

Congress sources said while party leaders in Delhi and Punjab are opposed to extending support to AAP, the party's central leadership is more sympathetic to Kejriwal on the issue of ordinance in view of ongoing efforts to forge opposition unity to take on the BJP in 2024 Lok Sabha polls.

The final decision will be taken by Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge, the sources said.

Congress general secretary KC Venugopal had on Monday clarified the party's position on the Ordinance and said it will take a decision after consulting state units and like-minded opposition parties.

"The Congress Party has not taken any decision on the issue of the Ordinance brought against the SC judgment on the powers of the Government of NCT of Delhi with respect to appointment of officers. It will consult its state units & other like-minded parties on the same," Venugopal said in a tweet.

"The Party believes in the Rule of Law and at the same time does not condone unnecessary confrontation, political witch-hunt and campaigns based on lies against political opponents by any political party," he added.

AAP is a key rival of Congress in Delhi and Punjab and is seen to have cut into party's vote share in some other states.