Kejri RS list ignites row
New Delhi: The ruling AAP on Wednesday declared three Rajya Sabha nominees from Delhi, leading to corruption charges in the choice of the candidates, one of them a businessman who was with the Congress until recently.
The three included AAP leader Sanjay Singh, former Congress leader Sushil Gupta and former Institute of Chartered Accountants of India president Narayan Dass Gupta. Gupta and Dass Gupta joined the AAP recently.
The AAP's Kumar Vishvas, who eyed a seat, lost out, claimed "martyrdom" and hinted he had been punished for speaking against chief minister Arvind Kejriwal. The polls are slated for January 16.
Deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia said 18 luminaries had been approached and 11 "seriously considered". Sisodia added that all had refused as "they cherished their independence" or "feared harassment by the BJP".
Those approached included former RBI chief Raghuram Rajan, ex-BJP minister Arun Shourie and former CJI T.S. Thakur. "We nominated those who may not be of high-level but with significant contributions," said Sisodia. AAP leader Ashutosh objected to Gupta's choice.
Gupta, who runs schools and heads private hospitals' boards, was a Congress candidate in the 2013 state polls. He had declared assets of Rs 164 crore. Ex-AAP leader Yogendra Yadav tweeted. "I used to say, whatever his other faults @ArvindKejriwal cannot be bought. Now I don't know."