Senior AAP leader Phoolka favours autonomy for AAP Punjab unit, not split

The former leader of opposition in Punjab Assembly and MLA from Dakha also suggested that the state unit should function like a regional party with total independence on state matters.

Published: 17th March 2018 02:45 PM  |   Last Updated: 17th March 2018 02:45 PM   |  A+A-

AAP supremo and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal | AFP File Photo

By PTI

CHANDIGARH: Senior AAP leader H S Phoolka today asked party legislators in Punjab to seek "autonomy" for the state unit rather than forming a separate party "in the best interest" of the state, a day after majority of AAP MLAs contemplated a split.

Giving his views for the first time after party chief Arvind Kejriwal's apology to a former minister which pushed the state unit into a crisis, the former leader of opposition in Punjab Assembly and MLA from Dakha also suggested that the state unit should function like a regional party with total independence on state matters.

"In best interest of Pb, my suggestion to Pb AAP MLAs- demand autonomy, not a separate party. AAP Punjab should function as a Regional party with an alliance with national AAP. In Punjab matters, total independence & on national issues, go by National leadership (sic)," Phoolka, a noted Supreme Court lawyer, tweeted.

Kejriwal's apology to Akali leader and former minister Bikram Singh Majithia for accusing him of drugs trade pushed the party's Punjab unit into a crisis as the state leadership yesterday had contemplated breaking away and forming a separate unit, saying the "meek surrender" was painful and very unfortunate.

A two-round marathon meeting was held yesterday by the Punjab unit of AAP here in which a resolution on splitting from the Delhi unit and forming a separate unit was discussed, though a final decision was deferred.

"Two to three resolutions were kept, which were discussed thoroughly. One among these was whether we should split from the Delhi unit and form a separate unit or should we continue like this. Consensus could not be built on this even though majority MLAs wanted to break away."

The members said they were very angry with this apology while others felt that they wanted to ask Delhi leadership on apology issue.

"Therefore, decision on this has been deferred for the time being," AAP senior leader from the state and MLA Kanwar Sandhu had said yesterday.

"A vast majority of the leaders was of the view that why a separate unit of Punjab AAP should not be formed which will have alliance with Lok Insaf Party and also forge alliance with like-minded parties and can even go to the extent of having former Punjab unit convenor Sucha Singh Chhotepur on board," AAP MLA and leader of opposition in Punjab Assembly Sukhpal Singh Khaira had said.

In a further jolt, the Lok Insaf Party (LIP), the AAP's ally in the state, had also snapped ties with the party in the wake of Kejriwal's apology.

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