Cong can't be considered competitor in upcoming Delhi polls: Sanjay Singh

Uzmi Athar

New Delhi, Nov 17 (PTI) The Delhi assembly elections, to be held early next year, will see a direct fight between the ruling Aam Aadmi Party and the BJP, as the Congress is not even in the competition, senior AAP leader Sanjay Singh said.

Refuting reports that the Congress might emerge as a surprise player in the upcoming assembly elections and put up a tough fight, as was the case in Haryana, Singh said the situation in the national capital is 'completely different'.

Claiming that no one even mentions Congress in Delhi, the AAP Rajya Sabha MP said the grand old party cannot be even considered a competitor for the elections in Delhi.

In the 2015 assembly elections, AAP won 67 of the 70 seats and the BJP got the rest, while the Congress drew a blank.

'In Delhi, people have seen our work and they are happy with it. They will vote based on that,' he told PTI in an interview. Singh also ruled out forging pre-poll alliance with the Congress for the assembly elections.

Before the Lok Sabha elections, the AAP and the Congress were in talks to form a pre-poll alliance. But the talks were called off when the two parties could not reach an agreement on seat sharing.

About the agenda of the AAP for the upcoming polls, Singh said, in the last five years, the AAP government reached out to every section of the society through its schemes -- whether it was education to benefit children and youth, 'tirth yatra' for the elderly, free travel for women in buses or CCTV installation for their safety.

'This shows how we believe in taking everyone forward. These are the agenda that the AAP will pursue again if it is voted to power,' he said.

To a question whether the recent announcement of the Centre to regularise unauthorised colonies in Delhi can prove to be a game changer for the BJP, Singh said it is another 'jumla' of the saffron party.

'It took four years to take the decision of regularising unauthorised colonies. They did it right before the election. Now, they are saying they will pass a bill and then registration needs to be done on a website. In this manner, the election will get over. If they are honest about the issue, they should have been brought it earlier,' he said.

If the BJP was serious about this move, they could have brought an ordinance for it, Singh said, adding, 'But it was not done. It is nothing but a 'jumla' and their intentions are not genuine.' The Union Cabinet approved in October a proposal to grant ownership rights to people living in unauthorised colonies in Delhi.

Union Housing and Urban Affairs Minister Hardeep Singh Puri has said the Centre would bring a bill in the Winter Session of Parliament to give relief to the residents of unauthorised colonies in the national capital.

The decision will affect 1,797 identified unauthorised colonies spread over 175 square km inhabited by people from lower-income groups, Puri had said last month. PTI UZM NSDNSD