Congress shrugs of BJP, AAP threat; Pushes ‘clean, competent’ Maken


Referring to Bedi, who joined BJP on Thursday and could be its chief ministerial candidate, AAP convener Kejriwal and Shazia Ilmi, one of AAP’s founder members who joined the saffron outfit on Friday, Congress spokesperson Abhishek Manu Singhvi branded them as “johnnies-come-lately” who could not be trusted.

Apparently drawing from Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s penchant for using alliteration to drive home his point, he said Congress could boast of “two Ts” in its “tried and tested” track record in running the government in Delhi for 15 years and “two Cs” in “clean and competent” Maken, who heads its campaign for the February 7 polls.

“Congress is the only party which is fully tried and fully tested and has a dynamic leader in Maken who has given all his life to Delhi. He is clean and competent,” Singhvi said at a press conference here.

Quoting from comments made by Bedi, Kejriwal and Ilmi in the past, the Congress spokesperson claimed that they were “unreliable”.

Taking a dig at Bedi, he said she used to dream of becoming the Delhi Police Commissioner and has now started dreaming about being the chief minister. These leaders spearheaded the Anna Hazare-led anti- corruption movement and had claimed that it was “apolitical”, Singhvi said as he read from their previous tweets and comments.

Kejriwal had vowed not to enter politics while Bedi had often been critical of BJP and Modi, he further claimed. “How much can people trust such turncoats?” he said.

The Congress spokesman cited one of Bedi’s tweets in which the former IPS officer, commenting on Modi’s ‘Sadbhavna’ fast, had said, “What if he first planned to reach out to families in need of healing?” Her reference was to the victims of the Gujarat riots.

Attacking Ilmi, Singhvi claimed she had once remarked that “no Indian or woman who respects women should vote for BJP or Congress”. In another of her tweets, she had said ‘hypocrisy, thy name is BJP’, he added.

The Congress spokesperson highlighted the developmental work done during its 15 years in power in Delhi under Sheila Dikshit and said that BJPs Madan Lal Khurana, Sahib Singh Verma or Sushma Swaraj, all of whom have been chief ministers of Delhi, stood nowhere near it.

From one of the most-polluted cities in the world, Delhi became one of the cleanest under Congress, Singhvi said while dismissing Kejriwal’s tenure as one about which there is nothing to talk about.

Meanwhile, asked if Dikshit would campaign for the party, he said she would and sought to downplay recent comments by her which have been at odds with the official Congress line.

“She is a senior Congress leader and a very successful Chief Minister,” Singhvi said even as he added that “it does not mean that her position is eternal” in an indication that the party had decided to look beyond her.