Calling the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) non-existent in the state, Punjab Chief Minister Captain Amarinder Singh on Monday ruled out the need for an alliance with the party. He added that decision on a coalition with the party would be taken by the Congress high command Rahul Gandhi.
"AAP was totally non-existent in Punjab, and there was absolutely no need for the Congress in the state to go in for an alliance with the Arvind Kejriwal’s party," said Captain Amarinder Singh.
He also said that Punjab Pradesh Congress Committee (PPCC) had conveyed these views to the Rahul Gandhi.
"AAP had become defunct, with no identity now in Punjab, as against the situation prevailing in the last Lok Sabha elections," he asserted.
"However, any decision on a coalition with AAP or any other party would be taken by the Congress high command, keeping in mind the national perspective and electoral compulsions, and would be followed by PPCC, " said the Chief Minister.
Captain Amarinder Singh also exuded confidence that Congress would win all the 13 Lok Sabha seats in Punjab. He said the best and most winning candidates would be chosen by the party. The Chief Minister also added that the issue of any change in portfolios of the ministers was not discussed during the meeting with Rahul Gandhi.
Captain Amarinder Singh spoke on the issue of the Kartarpur Corridor and said that Pakistan had already started work on the construction of the road on their side. But the work had not begun on the Indian side as the state government had not received any funds so far from the Centre for acquiring land for building the infrastructure.
The Chief Minister also responded to PM Narendra Modi's charge during his speech in Gurdaspur on Congress farm loan waivers not reaching the needy farmers.
"Modi believed in misleading and deceiving people with his trumped-up allegations and fabrications, but the voters of the country would not be taken in again by his ` jumlebaazi ’," he said.
He said that had his government had waived off crop loans worth Rs 3,417 crores of 4,14,275 farmers in just one and that his government was committed to covering all the 10.25 lakh small and marginal farmers targeted in the farm loan waiver scheme announced by it. He added that others will also to be covered in subsequent phases, as the fiscal situation of the state improves further. He said loans of the remaining about Rs 3 lakh of the 10.25 lakh farmers would be waived off shortly.