The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) will kickstart poll prep for Madhya Pradesh Assembly elections on March 14 at a rally in Bhopal to be addressed by Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and his Punjab counterpart Bhagwant Mann, a party functionary said. on Saturday.
AAP organisational general secretary Sandeep Pathak told reporters that the Kejriwal-led party will contest all 230 seats in the elections, due later this year.
“Arvind Kejriwal and Bhagwant Mann are coming to Bhopal on March 14. This is going to be the first election rally in MP. The people of MP want to vote for a change,” Pathak said.
Citing the result of last year’s civic polls in Madhya Pradesh, he said AAP would form the next government in the central state.
In local body elections held in Madhya Pradesh in July-August, 2022, the AAP claimed to have garnered a 6.3 per cent vote share. The party had fielded about 1,500 candidates for councillor posts in urban body polls. Of these, 40 won, while 135-140 finished runner-up.
In panchayat polls, held without party symbols, AAP-supported candidates won 10 posts of district panchayat members, 23 janpad members, 103 sarpanches, and 250 panches, party leaders had said.
Mr Pathak said the people of Madhya Pradesh felt “cheated” by the BJP and Congress, and are looking for an alternative in AAP, he said.
“People have given enough time to the BJP and Congress but both have done no good to them. So, the people were looking at AAP in MP now,” he added.
He alleged the BJP was buying MLAs of the opposition Congress and claimed both parties do not care for the people.
According to Mr Pathak, Congress and BJP indulge in “destructive politics” for the sake of power whereas the AAP has built hospitals and schools.
The Rajya Sabha MP also said the “destructive and dirty politics” was giving way to “constructive politics” in India with the emergence of AAP under Kejriwal.
He said AAP wants to develop Madhya Pradesh like Delhi where hospitals and schools have been constructed. “AAP is providing services for free to the people with zero tolerance towards corruption”.
He also said the AAP has quickly emerged as an alternative political force in the country and became a national party in just ten years by forming governments in Delhi and Punjab while putting up an impressive show in Gujarat. In the 230-member MP Assembly, the BJP has 127 MLAs and the Congress 96.
The BJP had lost the 2018 Assembly polls in MP but managed to come back to power in 2020 following the collapse of the Congress government led by Kamal Nath. The BJP is keen to win yet another term under Chief Minister Shivraj Singh Chouhan who has been at the helm since November 29, 2005, barring the period from December 18, 2018, to March 2020 when Nath headed the Congress government.
(Except for the headline, this story has not been edited by NDTV staff and is published from a syndicated feed.)
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