Congress's Navjot Sidhu has accused Arvind Kejriwal of faking data while choosing Bhagwant Mann as his Aam Aadmi Party's Chief Ministerial face in Punjab. Tagging Mr Kejriwal a "fraud" at a press conference this afternoon, Mr Sidhu said he has written to the Election Commission flagging what he called a "fake propaganda" and a notice has been sent to the party.
Last week, AAP named Bhagwant Mann as its Chief Ministerial face, saying he received more than 93 per cent of the votes in a televoting drive where people were asked to phone in their choice for the top post. Navjot Sidhu, Mr Kejriwal had said, received 3 per cent of the 21 lakh-plus votes received, Mr Kejriwal had said.
"It is clear that AAP will win the Punjab election. In a way, the person chosen as the Chief Ministerial candidate will be the next Chief Minister of Punjab," Mr Kejriwal had said in Mohali.
Mr Sidhu, who heads the ruling Congress in Punjab, said the Congress has complained about AAP's "Janta Chunegi Apna CM" drive to the Election Commission and asked it to investigate the matter through call and message logs. Citing the Model Code of Conduct, the party has demanded that a criminal case be filed against AAP and its party chief if the campaign is found fake.
"A show-cause notice has been sent today. He (Arvind Kejriwal) is trying to fool the people of Punjab through his dirty tricks...AAP has created a hybrid model of fake news," Mr Sidhu told reporters today.
"The Aam Aadmi Party is claiming that they have received approximately 7 lakh WhatsApp messages, 2.5 lakh Voice Messages and approximately 8 lakh voice calls. If we try to fit this data into mathematical calculations then it doesn't make sense at all. Usually such calls take at least 15 seconds then only 5760 can be attended in one day and that shall add upto 23,040 calls in four days," Mr Sidhu wrote to the Election Commission.
"They issued a personal number for the tele-voting option to choose a CM face. In one second, they claimed to have received 12 messages, which is not possible," Mr Sidhu told reporters.