Bhagwant Mann resigns as AAP's Punjab chief


Two top AAP Punjab leaders - state president Bhagwat Mann and co-president Aman Arora on Friday resigned in protest against Kejriwal's apology with at least 15 of the 20 party legislators in favour of defecting and forming an independent unit.

His "meek surrender" had drawn flak from AAP's Punjab unit leaders who termed Kejriwal's step a "letdown". "But my fight against drug mafia and all kind of corruption in Punjab will continue as an 'Aam Aadmi'of Punjab", he tweeted.

On Thursday, Delhi chief minister Kejriwal had apologised in writing to former Akali minister in Punjab Bikram Majithia. Calling off the alliance, the Lok Insaf Party said Kejriwal was a "traitor" and "fraudster" who had "betrayed" Punjabis by issuing the apology, PTI reported.

Hindustan Times has also learnt that SAD leaders managed to convince their AAP counterparts that conviction in this case was certain.

Majority of AAP MLAs too, except those owing allegiance to Delhi leadership, are seriously contemplating to break-away and form another faction, as per approved under anti-defection law, under Khaira's leadership. Now I have found that the allegations are unfounded, and hence, there should be no politics on such issues.

Punjab AAP to take cadres' feedback AAP's Punjab unit held two marathon meetings on Friday. "Our fight for Punjab continues", Sandhu tweeted.

The apology letter was reportedly issued on account of a strategy devised by the AAP legal team to get rid of the defamation cases filed against the party and its leaders.

In another fallout of Kejriwal's written apology to Majithia on Thursday, AAP's only alliance partner in the country, the Lok Insaaf Party (LIP) broke the tie-up over the "betrayal of Punjabis" by the AAP chief. "I hereby withdraw all the statements and allegations made against you and apologise".

Kejriwal is facing defamation cases in court for levelling allegations against Jaitley and Gadkari.

BJP MLA Vijender Gupta accused the AAP chief of only rendering "lip service" on the sealing drive and urged the Chief Minister to hold an all-party meeting with the Supreme Court-appointed Monitoring committee overseeing the drive. "Moreover, we were not taken into confidence before he tendered an apology", said AAP MLA Sukhpal Singh Khaira while talking to reporters here. "He has done nothing to stop it", Gupta, the Leader of Opposition in the Delhi Assembly, said.

STF head IPS officer H S Sidhu had submitted a report with Punjab and Haryana High Court in a sealed cover in February on the alleged role of Majithia with drug traffickers.

He claimed that Kejriwal's apology only established the fact that the Aam Aadmi Party and the Shiromani Akali Dal had a secret understanding to divide the anti-incumbency votes against the Akalis.