New Delhi: Amid ongoing row over passing a resolution in the Delhi Assembly to withdraw the Bharat Ratna conferred on former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi over 1984 anti-Sikh riots, AAP supremo and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday said that no resolution was passed.
Talking to reporters, he said that the resolution was presented but hasn’t been passed. CM Kejriwal’s clarification came a day after Alka Lamba was asked to tender her resignation after she raised objections to pass a resolution in the assembly on revoking late PM Rajiv Gandhi’s Bharat Ratna.
Earlier, Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia had said, “No resignation has been sought and from no one, all these are rumours.” Reportedly, he also added no resolution was passed in the Assembly and the original resolution moved by party MLA Jarnail Singh on the floor of the House had no mention of Rajiv Gandhi.
According to reports, the Delhi Assembly on Friday adopted a resolution on the 1984 anti-Sikh riots in which it was demanded that the Bharat Ratna awarded to former prime minister Rajiv Gandhi be withdrawn, but the AAP swiftly distanced itself from the reference to the Congress leader.
The move soon kicked off a massive political row with Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) MLA Alka Lamba claiming that the party leadership has asked her to resign as she stood against the resolution.
Lamba said she was ready to face “any consequences” and claimed she spoke to AAP supremo and CM Kejriwal who, she said, asked her to resign as MLA. “I am ready to do so”, she said.
The Chandni Chowk MLA said she was not happy with the demand to take back Bharat Ratna from Gandhi and staged a walkout in protest.
“Party has asked for my resignation. I’m ready to resign but Rajiv Gandhi has sacrificed a lot for the country and I didn’t support the proposal in the Delhi Assembly of taking back his Bharat Ratna. I’ve been asked to resign because I stood against the decision of the party,” Lamba told ANI.
In a tweet, she said, “I was asked to support the resolution demanding taking back the Bharat Ratna awarded to former Prime Minister Rajiv Gandhi. Since I didn’t agree with this, I staged a walk out. I am ready to accept whatever punishment given to me.
Interestingly, the AAP later distanced itself from the resolution.
The party issued a clarification saying that the portion relating to the former PM cannot be considered a part of the resolution because it was “handwritten”.
Reacting to the development, the Delhi unit of Congress dubbed AAP as the ‘B team’ of the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which was showing its true colours.
Delhi Congress president Ajay Maken asserted that Rajiv Gandhi sacrificed his life for the country, in reply to ruling party’s attacks on the former prime minister in the House, and a resolution that demanded taking back the country’s highest civilian award bestowed on him.
The development comes at a time when there are speculations of the possibility of an alliance between the AAP and the Congress in Delhi for Lok Sabha Elections 2019.