The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) today accused the BJP of trying to buy its lawmakers, claiming that the ruling party has offered Rs. 10 crore each to seven of its legislators for switching sides. "Our 7 MLAs has been contacted by @BJP4India and they are being offered 10 crores each to leave AAP. I urge BJP to fight election on issues rather than doing this horse trading," party leader Manish Sisodia was quoted as saying by AAP on Twitter.
The BJP rejected the accusation, dubbing it as an attempt by AAP to remain relevant at a time of decline. "As AAP is baffled because it is losing the elections, its leaders are desperately trying to get some attention by making bizarre allegations," Delhi BJP media head Ashok Goyal said, adding that a "rebellion" was breaking out in the rival party's ranks.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi had created a flutter earlier this week, when he claimed that 40 legislators of Mamata Banerjee's Trinamool Congress were itching to jump ship as soon as the results are announced. "Didi, on 23 May, the day of results, the lotus will bloom everywhere and your MLAs will leave you and run. Even today, Didi, 40 of your MLAs are in contact with me," he had said at a rally in Serampore.
A combative Mamata Banerjee had responded just as quickly, terming PM Modi's statement as "unconstitutional" and daring him to "find at least one person" willing to cross over. "Aren't you ashamed? You describe yourself as a protector of the constitution, but in spite of being in a constitutional position, you are violating it. You don't have any right to be the Prime Minister, ex-prime minister," she lashed out, demanding that his nomination for the position be scrapped.
Samajwadi Party leader Akhilesh Yadav, for his part, demanded that a "72-year ban" from electoral politics be imposed on the Prime Minister for delivering what he termed as a "shameful" speech.
This is not the first time AAP has accused the BJP of horse trading. In 2014, party convenor Arvind Kejriwal released a sting video that purportedly showed a senior BJP leader offering Rs 4 crore to AAP leader Dinesh Mohania in return for support to form the government in Delhi.
(With inputs from PTI)
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