AAP 20 MLAs disqualification: Congress protests, demands Kejriwal's resignation

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AAP 20 MLAs disqualification: Congress protests, demands Kejriwal's resignation
AAP 20 MLAs disqualification: Congress protests, demands Kejriwal's resignation

New Delhi : The Congress on Monday staged a protest outside the Delhi Secretariat demanding Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal's resignation over the disqualification of 20 AAP MLAs in the office-of-profit case.

The Congress also accused Kejriwal of being an agent of the Bharatiya Janata party (BJP).

Hundreds of Delhi Congress workers gathered here and raised slogans like 'Bhrasth Kejriwal gaddi chodo, sacchai se muh na modo (corrupt Kejriwal resign, don't turn your face from the truth), 'Bhrashtachar ki ati machai, Vidhan Sabha ki sadasyata gawai (they crossed all limits of corruption and lost their MLAs).

Delhi Congress unit chief Ajay Maken told reporters: "Kejriwal had said that his MLAs will serve the people like ordinary workers and will fight against corruption.

"But they did the opposite as the AAP government got fully enmeshed in corruption soon after coming to power," the Congress leader said.

"Kejriwal must resign."

The Congress leader's remarks came a day after President Ram Nath Kovind approved the recommendations of the Election Commission to disqualify the 20 AAP MLAs for holding office-of-profit as Parliamentary Secretaries.

The EC gave its opinion to the President on a complaint by advocate Prashant Patel, a member of the Hindu Legal Cell, in June 2015, who petitioned then President Pranab Mukherjee alleging illegality in the appointment of Parliamentary Secretaries.

The application by Patel said 21 AAP MLAs, including Jarnail Singh (Rajouri Garden) who resigned to contest the Punjab Assembly polls last year, were appointed Parliamentary Secretaries to Ministers in the Delhi government in violation of the Constitution.

Maken also said that the people of Delhi were not happy with either the Aam Aadmi Party government or with the BJP-led Central government.

"In the name of sealing drive, money was being extorted from traders, street vendors were being driven out, and the poor, labourers and the middle class were fed up with the rampant corruption of the Kejriwal government," he said.

Hitting out at the EC for delaying the disqualification of the MLAs, Maken said: "We want to ask the BJP-appointed Election Commission that why it did not recommend the disqualification of the 20 AAP MLAs to the President before December 22, 2017?

The poll panel had announced the dates for polls to three Rajya Sabha seats on December 22.

He also alleged that it was apparently done to help the AAP get its three Rajya Sabha candidates elected smoothly at the behest of the BJP.

Accusing Kejriwal of being an agent of the BJP, Maken said: "Kejriwal is a BJP agent because he had fielded AAP candidates in the assembly elections in those states where the fight was directly between the Congress and the BJP.

He did that to create a wedge in the Congress vote bank to help the BJP candidates win.