AAP legislator calls off ‘fast’, to protest again

January 28, 2014 - 5:48:07 am

New Delhi: Expelled AAP legislator Vinod Kumar Binny called off his hunger strike within hours of starting it yesterday but threatened to launch another protest against the Delhi government soon.

“We are giving 10 days time to the Delhi government. If our demands are not met, we will lunch a movement against the Aam Aadmi Party,” Binny told the media after calling off the fast.

Earlier, he began his protest at the Jantar Mantar area in the heart of the capital, accusing the one-month-old Arvind Kejriwal government of not implementing its campaign promises.

Binny was expelled from the party on Sunday, about 10 days after he turned a rebel. The AAP has also terminated his primary membership of the party. 

The legislator, who defeated A K Walia, the health minister in the previous Sheila Dikshit government, from the Laxmi Nagar assembly constituency in east Delhi, has been attacking the AAP government for allegedly backtracking on promises made in the election manifesto.

Another AAP leader, Tina Sharma, who joined him in the protest, said: “This is a fight on issues. The AAP has breached the trust of people.”

A few supporters of India Against Corruption (IAC) also extended support to Binny. “Kejriwal’s priority is not to save the government and work for the welfare of the people. His priority is to run away from promises he made to the people during the elections. But I won’t let him run away from his responsibilities,” said Binny.

Refuting the charges, Kejriwal said yesterday that unlike other governments, the AAP has cleared a number of development works in the one month it has been in power. “We are not here to do politics or to save our government,” he said. 

98 lakh people join

Meanwhile, 98 lakh people have become members of the Aam Aadmi Party and registration will be open till the Lok Sabha polls, party leader Gopal Rai said. “Till January 26, a total of 98 lakh people have joined the party from all over the country,” Rai said at a press conference at the party office.

Giving the break-up, he said 76 lakh joined the party through the form registration service, seven lakh through the online service, five lakh through SMS and 10 lakh by giving “missed calls” on AAP phone. The AAP launched the free membership drive earlier this month, targeting one crore members by January 26.

Rai said that during the “Main Bhi Aam Aadmi” (I am also a common man) drive, many people also illegally became members, but their names were later scrutinised and removed.

“A separate team has been constituted to look after the illegal membership registrations and take initiatives to curb such activities,” said Rai.

On the AAP’s first list of candidates for the Lok Sabha elections, party national secretary Pankaj Gupta said as the AAP has till now received around 5,000 forms from 250 constituencies, the verification process was taking time, thereby delaying the release of the candidates’ list.