3 in trouble over RS seats sale jibe

The Asian Age.

Metros, Delhi

AAP nominee sends defamation notice to Mishra, MP Parvesh, BJP leader .

Kapil Mishra (Photo: PTI)

New Delhi: After filing his nomination for the Rajya Sabha, AAP candidate Sushil Gupta served defamation notices on Thursday to Lok Sabha MP Parvesh Verma, dissident AAP legislator Kapil Mishra, and Delhi BJP spokesperson Harish Khurana for allegedly getting nominated by paying money to the party. Mr Gupta alleged that Mr Mishra accused him of ‘buying’ his Rajya Sabha nomination. Mr Verma too had accused Mr Kejriwal of ‘selling’ Rajya Sabha seats for Rs 100 crore.

Interestingly, the founding members of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), who are no longer associated with the party, had also been critical of this decision and implied that money had changed hands in the Rajya Sabha nominations. However, there are no such reports of defamation notices sent to them.

Hitting back, Mr Mishra said he would be nominating the mother of Santosh Kohli, who had died during Anna movement, for the Upper House.

Meanwhile, the row over AAP’s nominations for Rajya Sabha snowballed further with several AAP legislators and workers reaching the party headquarters in the morning to question the party’s choice for nominations to the Rajya Sabha, especially those of Mr Gupta, who had past links with Congress.

The party sought to explain the choice of businessman Mr Gupta as one of its Rajya Sabha candidates in terms of realpolitik, saying that his induction may aid the party’s expansion plans in Haryana. The party reached out to its volunteers via social media with its Delhi convenor Gopal Rai making efforts to justify the choices, which have led to resentment within the leadership as well as the AAP rank and file.

Mr Rai rubbished the charges of wheeling and dealing behind the nominations, saying that such allegations, aimed at cutting short chief minister Arvind Kejriwal’s political career, routinely surface as part of the “game plans” hatched by his rivals.

He said that Mr Gupta, a billionaire businessman who runs a chain of private and charitable schools and hospitals in Delhi and Haryana, was picked due to “practical reasons” and N.D. Gupta for his expertise on the economy.

Earlier in the day Sanjay Singh and the two Guptas filed nominations. However, there was a stark contrast in the way the three candidates went about the process.

Mr Singh received a rousing reception at the party headquarters before he went to file the nomination, riding atop an open vehicle, with senior leader Ashutosh by his side.