AAP intensifies demand for referendum

New Delhi: Intensifying its demand for referendum on the issue of statehood of Delhi, the AAP today said it will work with the Delhi government and “engage” its volunteers to seek a solution on the contentious issue.

The party also tried to counter the arguments over giving statehood to Delhi and referendum.

“Getting statehood for Delhi is one of the important demands of the party, which it had promised to the people of Delhi. On this issue, the party is strongly with the Delhi government and will also work with it on the matter.

“There are many examples of national capitals across the world. Many people point out the example of Washington DC, but they conveniently forget that Delhi has seven MPs and 70 MLAs where as Washington DC has no elected representatives.

Comparing the position of two cities is like comparing apples and oranges,” party’s Delhi unit convener Dilip Pandey told a news conference.

He said the party will engage its volunteers on the issue.

The volunteers will help garner support from the people and also put pressure on the Centre.

“Even we have studied the constitution and there is a provision for a referendum for the states,” Pandey said.

The party also attacked the BJP and Congress for making “U turn” and exploiting the statehood issue as per their “political convenience”.

“The Congress’s 2015 manifesto talks about the statehood.

However, it was in power at the Centre from 2004-2014 and in the state from 1998-2013.

“BJP’s V K Malhotra strongly batted for statehood for Delhi in 2011 and so did Deputy Prime Minister L K Advani in 2003 when he was the Deputy Prime Minister. Similarly, the BJP in its manifestos of 2013 state assembly and 2014 Lok Sabha had promised statehood to Delhi. Both these parties have now made a U turn on the issue,” Pandey said.

When asked about party’s stand on referendum on the Kashmir issue, Pandey dodged the question saying the party was not in power in the state.

Commenting on the Madhya Pradesh chief minister’s nod for a CBI probe on Vyapam, Pandey said that it wanted a SIT to be formed, which could be monitored by a sitting judge of a supreme court.(PTI)