• PTI

AAP rivals targeting me, Bhagwant Mann as they don't want an honest govt in Punjab: Kejriwal

Chandigarh, Feb 14 (PTI) Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Monday claimed that the AAP's rival parties in Punjab are targeting him and its chief ministerial candidate Bhagwant Mann as they do not want the state to have an honest government.


The national convenor of the Aam Aadmi Party said the only fault of his party and its leaders is that they talk about improving the condition of schools and hospitals in Punjab, giving jobs to people and ensuring justice in sacrilege cases.



In a swipe at his Punjab counterpart, Kejriwal said Charanjit Singh Channi has been having nightmares about him and is unable to sleep these days.


Blaming corruption for the inflow of drugs into the state, the AAP leader asserted it will stop once his party comes to power.


Addressing a news conference in Amritsar, Kejriwal said, "During the past few days you must have observed that all parties and their leaders are only abusing me and Bhagwant Mann. Yesterday, (Union Home Minister) Amit Shah came (to Punjab) and he abused me and the AAP."


"Since morning till late evening Channi abuses me and Mann, but he does not take the name of (SAD chief) Sukhbir Singh Badal.


"Sukhbir Badal also abuses me and Bhagwant Mann, but he does not take Channi's name. Priyanka Gandhi (who was in Punjab on Sunday) also abused me. It seems they all have come together and are targeting us," he said.



Kejriwal said all these rival parties do not want to defeat the AAP, but Punjab.


"These parties do not want the AAP to come to power. They want that the way they have looted Punjab for the last 70 years, that should continue. Their fear is if the AAP comes to power, their loot will be stopped permanently," he said.


He appealed to the people of Punjab to defeat these parties and save the state. He said the AAP will give an honest government to the state.


Hitting out at Channi, who has been targeting Kejriwal during his poll rallies, the Delhi chief minister said, "Channi abuses me from morning till late evening. These days Channi is unable to sleep. When he closes his eyes, I come in his dreams like a 'bhoot' (ghost) and then he wakes up."


"Those who have looted Punjab till today, they are seeing me in their dreams and they are unable to sleep these days," he said.



On the issue of drugs, drones and explosives being pushed into the state from across the border, Kejriwal said corruption is behind many of these incidents.


"Drugs are being pushed in from the border, drones and tiffin bombs are coming in from the border. Behind many of these incidents, there is corruption somewhere," he said.


"We saw when the Mumbai bomb blasts took place, some Customs officials had compromised their integrity because of which RDX entered our country. Here too, there is corruption somewhere because of which drugs and all these things enter Punjab," he said.


The inflow of drugs will stop when the AAP forms the government in Punjab, he added.


Attacking the Congress-led state government, Kejriwal said the common people felt unsafe during its tenure.



"A big question arises whether the Congress can secure Punjab. The common Punjabis are feeling unsafe. On the other hand, there have been many sacrilege incidents, a bomb blast occurred in Ludhiana and there was a lapse in the prime minister's security," he said.


The AAP leader, however, said there should be no politics over the security breach incident. "But it is going on from both sides (Congress and BJP)," he said.


The AAP never does politics over security matters, Kejriwal said.


"We may have hundreds of differences with the Centre, but whenever it is a matter of public interest, we cooperate with the Centre... we will work with the Centre like one team for the security of the country and Punjab," he said.


Punjab goes to the polls on February 20. The counting of votes will be taken up on March 10.