- AAP will be contesting elections in UP, Himachal, Goa, Punjab, Gujarat, and Uttarakhand
- Aam Aadmi Party said it would contest all of Punjab’s 117 seats
- AAP is the second largest party of agriculture-centric Punjab, with 19 seats.
The eight-year-old Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) will hold elections next year in six states — Uttar Pradesh, Uttarakhand, Goa, Gujarat, Himachal Pradesh and Punjab — which will go to the polls next year.
Party Leader Arvind Kejriwal made the announcement at his Ninth National Council meeting on Thursday.
After the farmers’ tractor rally went rogue, Mr. Kejriwal said he was calling for action against those responsible for the January 26 violence in Delhi and declared, “The AAP will contest Assembly elections in Uttar Pradesh, Punjab, Goa, Uttarakhand, Gujarat, and Himachal Pradesh.”
The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), which governs four of the six states on which AAP plans to contest, has accused the BJP of ‘planting its stooge’ to disrupt the tractor rally.
Two days after the unrest, in which at least 24 cases were filed naming farm leaders who were also issued with show-cause notices, Mr. Kejriwal said his party would “boycott” the address of the President tomorrow as a way to show solidarity for protesting farmers.
The Budget session of Parliament begins on Friday.
“What happened on January 26 is regrettable, and whichever leader or party is involved should face strict action,” the Chief Minister of Delhi said.
Arvind Kejriwal added that the events that took place during the tractor rally do not indicate the end of the campaign against the three controversial agricultural laws passed by the Parliament.
The Chief Minister of India’s capital said, “We have to collectively back the farmers. Whatever happened that day cannot end the agitation.”
Without their party cap and flag, he also urged his cadre to always approach the protesting farmers. Arvind Kejriwal, the CM of Delhi, said, “Always approach them as fellow citizens. Do not do politics there.”
The party declared its unconditional support for their demands at the start of the Delhi farmers’ leg of the protest in November and invited them to Delhi, stating that the party was “sevadaar (in service)” and would always take care of “annadaata”.
Soon after, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) also announced that it would contest in all 117 seats in Punjab which is agriculture-centric, and also it is the second largest party with 19 seats. Within days, the promise of ‘corruption-free’ government added Uttarakhand and Uttar Pradesh to the list and gave the example of Delhi, where it has been in power for two consecutive terms.
Since then, it has targeted the BJP and Congress, both over different issues, including farm rules.
CM Kejriwal also said, “I call on the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) members to improve the party’s grassroots hold across the country,” and added, “For the people, the nation is important and AAP is the vehicle and we need to work to grow the party.”