The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government in Delhi lost majority in the Assembly after Independent MLA Rambeer Shokeen withdrew support on Tuesday.
MLA from Mundka, Shokeen, met Lt Governor Najeeb Jung today to formally withdraw his support to the Arvind Kejriwal government.
Later while speaking to reporters, Shokeen praised BJP’s prime ministerial candidate Narendra Modi.
“Jo Modi ji ko vote nahi dega vo desh ka gaddaar hoga (Those who will not vote for Modi would be traitors),” Shaukeen said.
Shokeen, who calls himself a social ,activist, was reportedly denied a ticket by the BJP which resulted in him contesting as an independent.
After Delhi threw up a hung assembly, he declared that he won’t support the BJP unless he’s requested by no one less than the party’s PM candidate Narendra Modi.
He had also reportedly said that he will join the BJP only if Modi offers him the post of Deputy CM.
Yesterday, Shokeen had said that he was withdrawing support to the AAP government as the Chief Minister has not fulfilled the promises he made to the people of Delhi during the polls.
“We had given support to the AAP based on the issue of removing unnecessary restrictions on villages, extension of ‘Lal dora’ boundaries and also on the water issue, but they have failed on these fronts. Last when, I, Binny and JD(U) MLA Shoaib Iqbal met Kejriwal on February 4, he assured us of starting work on these issues within a week but nothing has been done so far. I had also called up Kejriwal ji but he didn’t respond or call me back. So I have decided to withdraw my support,” Shokeen said.
The AAP government’s strength in the 70-member Assembly has now dropped to 35, one short of majority. The AAP has 27 MLAs of its own; the Congress with 8 MLAs and JD(U) MLA Shoiab Iqbal are supporting it from outside.
However, the AAP government appears to be safe for now as the Congress appears to be in no hurry to pull the plug, just yet.
A report said the party does not want Kejriwal to project himself as a martyr and gain political mileage in the upcoming Lok Sabha polls.
The BJP too is not keen to bring a no-confidence motion against the AAP government.
“BJP will not allow Arvind Kejriwal to resign and run away. We are committed to fight corruption and support Jan Lokpal. Send a copy to us,” BJP’s face in Delhi, Harsh Vardhan, said.
The Congress, which is supporting it from outside, has declared that it will not support the “unconstitutional” move to pass the Jan Lokpal Bill without the Centre’s nod.
But Kejriwal is defiant and has threatened to quit if the Jan Lokpal Bill and Swaraj Bill are not passed by the Delhi Assembly.
Kejriwal later said, “I am not trying to be toppled, that impression is wrong. I am doing my work. We are working day and night… very hard.”