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  • ଓଡ଼ିଆରେ ପଢନ୍ତୁ

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal on Thursday questioned the source of the Rs 800 crore allegedly offered by the BJP to 40 AAP MLAs for switching sides and asserted that his government is stable.

After a meeting of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) legislators at his residence, Kejriwal, along with his MLAs, went to Rajghat to pray for the failure of the Bharatiya Janata Party's (BJP) "Operation Lotus".

"They (BJP) offered Rs 20 crore each to our MLAs. They have kept Rs 800 crore for toppling the Delhi government. But the citizens of the country want to know about the source of this money. Is it from GST or the PM CARES Fund? Have some of their friends given them this money?" he asked.

The chief minister said his deputy Manish Sisodia, who is being probed by the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) for alleged corruption in the Excise Policy 2021-22, has been named in a "false FIR".

"Even mattresses and walls at Sisodia's residence were searched by the CBI but not even a single unaccounted penny was found. No objectionable documents or jewellery were found. We were thinking why was this happening with us since they also know that Sisodia is an extremely honest man and a patriot who has worked on education in the national capital," he said.

Reiterating Sisodia's claims, Kejriwal said a day after the CBI's raids, the deputy chief minister was approached by the BJP with an offer of the chief minister's post.

"The next day after the raids, they sent a message to Sisodia that you leave Kejriwal, get some MLAs and come to us. We will topple the Delhi government and close the CBI, ED cases against you. I think I would have done some good deeds in my past life that I have got a companion like Sisodia. They were offering him the chief minister's post but he refused. He rejected their offer," the AAP national convenor said.

He further alleged that the BJP is "offering Rs 20 crore each" to AAP MLAs with a design "to topple the Delhi government".

"I am extremely happy that no MLA has yielded under pressure. They want to poach 40 MLAs but I want to tell the people of Delhi that they have voted for a hardcore honest government. Neither me nor my MLAs and ministers will betray the country and be sold out," Kejriwal said.

The BJP has been attacking the AAP for "trying to deflect the focus" from the alleged corruption in the implementation of the 2021-22 Excise Policy and has asked the Kejriwal-led party to name the leaders of the saffron party who have approached its MLAs.

"Sometimes they say there is a scam of Rs 1.5 lakh crore, which is not even the budget of the Delhi government. Someone was saying there is a scam of Rs 8,000 crore. But what is this scam? Two leaders did a media briefing and said there has been a scam of Rs 1,100 crore. The LG's report said there is a scam of Rs 144 crore. The CBI FIR says there is a scam of Rs 1 crore. What is this scam? Is there anything? This is all rubbish," Kejriwal said.

He said the AAP MLAs prayed at Rajghat for peace to prevail in the country where the situation currently revolves around "attempts to topple state governments".

"This situation where they are toppling governments is not good. Why are they fighting with us? We meditated and prayed that the situation in the country improves. We prayed for the nation's progress and peace at Rajghat," Kejriwal said.

Earlier in the day, the AAP alleged that 40 of its Delhi MLAs were targeted by the BJP with an offer of Rs 20 crore each to switch sides, even as all the 62 of its legislators were accounted for during a meeting at Kejriwal's residence.

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