Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) convener Arvind Kejriwal said the party will work with the centre on issues of national security if it is voted to power in the upcoming Punjab election.
Raking up the row surrounding the breach in Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s security during his visit to Punjab last month, the Delhi Chief Minister sought to target the Charanjit Singh Channi-led government in Punjab.
Stressing that the AAP never compromises on national security issue, he told the media in Amritsar today, “If voted to power in Punjab, will work together with the Centre on the issue of security in Punjab and the country.”
On the PM security breach issue, he said, “There should be no politics on the issue of security of PM but politics was done from both sides.”
The AAP is the main challenger to the ruling Congress in Punjab and the poll campaign has seen Mr Kejriwal and Chief Minister Channi trade barbs on several issues, ranging from allegations of corruption to remarks dismissing each other’s claims of being the “aam aadmi”.
Mr Kejriwal further alleged that the Congress, the BJP and the Shiromani Akali Dal have joined forces against AAP and are consistently targeting him and the party’s Chief Ministerial candidate and MP Bhagwant Mann. “(Union Home Minister) Amit Shah, (Chief Minister) Channi, (Congress leader) Priyanka Gandhi and (Akali Dal) leader are together hurling abuses at me and Bhagwant Mann. They don’t say anything to each other,” he said.
“They have joined forces and don’t want AAP to form the government in Punjab. They fear that if we come to power, their loot will stop permanently,” he said.
“What is our fault? We are only saying that we will build schools and hospitals and fix power and law and order issues,” he said.
“Our is a honest party and we will form a honest government,” Mr Kejriwal said.
The AAP leader’s remarks on the breach in Prime Minister’s security come against the backdrop of the heated exchange between the centre and Punjab over the security breach issue.
During his visit to Punjab on January 5, the Prime Minister’s convoy had to be stopped for about 20 minutes on a flyover in Bathinda as the road was blocked by protesting farmers.
The Prime Minister eventually cut short his visit and returned to Delhi. What followed was a scathing criticism of the Punjab government by the centre and the BJP, with the party fielding top ministers and leaders to lead its charge.
Blaming the Charanjit Singh Channi government, Union minister and BJP leader Smriti Irani accused the Congress of “a murderous conspiracy to kill the PM”.
The Congress hit back, saying the Prime Minister’s travel plans were tweaked at the last moment. The party also accused the BJP of raking up the security lapse to cover up the embarrassment of thin crowds at a rally to be addressed by the Prime Minister.
Chief Minister Channi has stressed that there was no danger to the Prime Minister and said he was ready to die to protect the Prime Minister.
The matter came to Supreme Court after a PIL was filed and the war of words between the centre and the state continued there. The court has now appointed a 5-member committee to investigate the issue.