Sheila Dikshit rules out poll tieup with AAP, Cong leadership to take final decision

New Delhi: Even as the Aam Aadmi Party has declared candidates for six of the seven Lok Sabha seats in Delhi, the Congress leadership has not ruled out an alliance and a final decision is expected to be taken in the few days, notwithstanding the partys Delhi unit’s opposition to any tieup.

Delhi Congress chief and former Chief Minister Sheila Dikshit on Saturday told IANS there will be no alliance with the AAP, but did not say if the central party leadership will concur with her views.

A senior party leader said the objective of both the AAP and the Congress is to defeat the BJP in the Lok Sabha elections, and the possibility of an alliance is not over. “Statements of the AAP leadership show they are keen on an alliance with the Congress,” he said.

Dikshit, however, said there will be no alliance with the AAP. “The Delhi unit has taken a final call. No alliance with the AAP. No, not at all. From my side it is decided,” she said.

Asked if she was ruling out an alliance because it was not in party’s long-term interests, she said “yes”.

Answering a query, she said party candidates will be declared once the election dates are announced.

Asked if West Bengal Chief Minister Mamata Banerjee and Andhra Pradesh Chief Minister N. Chandrababu Naidu were sending feelers that there should be a tieup between the AAP and the Congress in Delhi, she said, “I am not aware of it”.

Asked if the central leadership will go by the decision of the Delhi party unit, Dikshit said, “I don’t know. I can’t say. I have said what I need to say on my behalf,” she said.

To a further query whether the high command can take a call, she said, “the high command is high command, please remember that”.

Announcing the names of candidates, AAP’s Delhi convenor Gopal Rai said the party was yet to take a call on the West Delhi seat. The party has decided to field Pankaj Gupta from Chandni Chowk, Dilip Pandey from North East Delhi, Atishi from East Delhi, Brajesh Goel from New Delhi, Gugan Singh from North West Delhi and Raghav Chadha from South Delhi.