Despite the bluster and bravado from both Congress and Aam Aadmi Party ruling out an alliance , hectic parleys are on between the two parties to forge an united front in a bid to defeat the BJP in Lok Sabha elections.
Congress leadership is in negotiation with Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal and senior AAP leaders to seal the seat sharing agreement. Congress leadership is still attempting to convince a section of Delhi Congress leaders to agree to an alliance with the Arvind Kejriwal-led AAP.
AICC general secretary in-charge of Delhi Congress PC Chacko confirmed that seat-sharing negotiation were on with AAP.
“I am in consultation with Congress party leaders in Delhi on the possibilities of forging an alliance with AAP. The Congress Working Committee has decided to align with like-minded parties across the country to defeat the BJP in Lok Sabha elections. I hope Delhi Congress leaders also go by this sentiment and decide on an alliance with AAP, but a final decision will be taken by the Congress president very soon,” Chacko told.
The opposition to alliance is primarily led by former Chief Minister and Delhi Congress Chief Sheila Dikshit. Dikshit however has said that she would abide by the party's decision.
Dikshit is of the view that aligning with AAP will not be in the party’s interests given that Congress has already been reduced to marginal force in the national capital . She has argued that formal alliance with AAP will shrink the party’s limited footprint even further. Dikshit has instead advocated that Congress should seek to strengthen itself by fighting alone in Lok Sabha polls and prepare to mount a formidable challenge in assembly elections lated later.
Another section of Delhi Congress however is of the view that defeating BJP is the party’s immediate responsibility and for which an alliance should be forged with AAP.
AAP is willing to allocate one out of the seven Lok Sabha constituencies in Delhi but Congress is insisting on at least three.
Senior NCP leader and former Union Minister Sharad Pawar is said to be playing the role of mediator and is working towards facilitating a tie-up between AAP and the Congress. Pawar met with Congress leaders and AAP's Sanjay Singh. He is also expected to meet Rahul Gandhi, who will take a final decision.
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