Delhi: Arvind Kejriwal apologises, says ready for fresh polls

New Delhi: Aam Aadmi Party leader and New Delhi MLA Arvind Kejriwal has called for fresh polls in Delhi while apologising for quitting in just 49 days of governance.

 Delhi: Arvind Kejriwal apologises, says ready for fresh polls

Arvind Kejriwal. AFP.

Addressing the media after a meeting with his party MLAs, Kejriwal said: "AAP is still an honest party.. we will go to the people and seek forgiveness for quitting the government."

Kejriwal met with his party MLAs after a section of his party MLAs expressed the need to explore the possibility of formation of government again, with support from the Congress.

On Tuesday, he had called on Lt Governor Najeeb Jung, while reports surfaced that he may form government again.

Hours after Kejriwal's meeting with Jung, Congress, however, ruled out extending support to AAP again if it tries to return to power and said it would prefer fresh polls.

Sources said the issue of formation of a government figured in the meeting between Kejriwal and Jung.

However, senior AAP leader Manish Sisodia, who was present in the nearly half-an-hour meeting with Jung, described it as a "courtesy call". Another party leader Sanjay Singh said, "The meeting was planned sometime back but could not take place earlier."

Following AAP's dismal performance, some of its MLAs last week had mooted a proposal for the party to once again form government in Delhi, with support from either BJP or Congress.

AAP had won 28 seats in its debut assembly elections in December last year and had later formed the government with outside support from Congress' eight MLAs.

BJP along with its ally Akali Dal's one MLA had won 32 seats in the 70-member assembly. The number of BJP MLAs has come down to 28 as three party legislators Harsh Vardhan, Ramesh Bidhuri and Pervesh Verma have been elected to Parliament.

The government led by Kejriwal had resigned on 14 February after the party's pet project— the Janlokpal Bill— could not be passed due to opposition from BJP and Congress. The reason cited was that the party needed to be present in Parliament if the country was to see any real change.

In the recently concluded Lok Sabha elections, Kejriwal unsuccessfully contested against BJP's PM candidate and now Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

President's Rule was imposed in Delhi on 17  February.  Lt Governor Najeeb Jung had not favoured dissolution of the 70-member Delhi Assembly as recommended by the Council of Ministers headed by Kejriwal and kept the Assembly in suspended animation.

BJP has also said that it would prefer fresh election than forming a government through "manipulation".

PTI

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Updated Date: May 21, 2014 11:37:15 IST