BJP trying to topple AAP government in Punjab, says Finance Minister Harpal Cheema
Aam Aadmi Party has accused the Bharatiya Janata Party of trying to bring down its government in Punjab by wooing its MLAs. Addressing a press conference here today, Punjab’s Finance Minister Harpal Singh Cheema alleged that BJP was using central agencies as well as money power to woo the AAP MLAs as part of its ‘Operation Lotus’, which in the past it has tried in Maharashtra, MP, Goa, Delhi and Rajasthan.
“Our MLAs have been approached with offers of up to Rs 25 crore to break away from AAP. The MLAs were told: “bade bau ji se milwayenge”. These MLAs have also been offered big posts. They were told that if you get more MLAs along, you would be given upto Rs 75 crore,” said Cheema.
The Finance Minister also alleged that BJP leaders have been telling AAP MLAs that they need only 35 MLAs to topple the government. “This is because they are already in touch with Congress MLAs,” said Cheema.
He accused the ruling party at Centre of keeping Rs 1375 crore in the state to woo the ruling party MLAs. Also, CBI and ED are being used to wean away MLAs, he said.
Cheema said seven to ten MLAs have been approached directly for the deal. He, however, refused to disclose the names of MLAs approached by the BJP. Cheema said the party’s legal cell is looking into the matter, and at this stage he would not like to disclose the names.