The Tribune – Day after, AAP tries to regroup

Jupinderjit Singh, Tribune News Service

Chandigarh, 12 March 2017. Three AAP MLAs, H S Phoolka, Sukhpal Khaira and Kanwar Sandhu, are in the forefront for the post of the Leader of Opposition even as the party is trying to regroup itself following its dismal performance in the Assembly elections.

By winning 22 seats, including two of its alliance partner, Lok Insaaf Party, the AAP is the second largest party in the Assembly by virtue of which one of its members will be the Leader of Opposition. This post holds significance as the government has to include the leader in various committees that recommends major decisions to the Chief Minister.

Amid reports that murmurs have started in the state unit against the dominance of the Delhi lobby, the party leadership led by political affairs incharge Sanjay Singh started the process of motivating the volunteers by holding various meetings today.

Sanjay Singh, who evaded meeting mediapersons, reportedly met some leaders asking them to get over the loss and plan ahead.

In another setback, the party failed to organise a rally at the Hola Mohalla in Anandpur Sahib with only five of the 20 MLAs reaching the venue. Some MLAs said the rally was cancelled as there was no prior plan to organise the rally today.

Phoolka and Sandhu also met leaders and volunteers today and discussed the party’s responsibilities. Sources say a formal meeting to review the results and choose a leader of the party in the Assembly will be held within a week.

Sandhu in a video message to the volunteers asked them to regroup fast. He said the party might have suffered the defeat due to overconfidence.

Sources say some leaders have sought the end of interference by the Delhi lobby in the state affairs of the party. A group of leaders said they wanted a “true” AAP MLA as the Leader of Opposition. Elaborating, they said the leader should be one who was not associated with any party earlier or had no interest in Delhi.


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