New Delhi: The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has now accused senior leader Yogendra Yadav of planting stories against Arvind Kejriwal and AAP in national dailies during Delhi Assembly polls.
“Yogendra Yadav was planting stories against Kejriwal and AAP in national dailies, was speaking against party off the record to journalists,” the party said in a statement.
The party also said that Bhushans -- Shanti and Prashant – supported the claims of AVAM against AAP.
“Prashant Bhushan and Shanti Bhushan supported the claims made by AVAM against AAP. During Delhi elections, three senior AAP leaders were working towards our defeat- Yogendra Yadav, Shanti Bhushan and Prashant Bhushan," the statement further said.
"We have decided to expose Yadav and Bhushan to the entire world," it added.
The national executive of the party had last week axed Yogendra and Prashant from top decision making body -- Political Affairs Committee (PAC).
Senior AAP leader Ashutosh said that Yadav violated the constitution of the party and worked against the interest of party by giving interviews to some news channels.
"The trio, especially Prashant called up volunteers from other states and told them not to campaign for the party. I will not be campaigning for the party this time. You guys also don't campaign. It is necessary for the party to lose. It is only then Arvind (Kejriwal) will get some sense," Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia, Transport Minister Gopal Rai, party's general secretary Pankaj Gupta and Sanjay Singh said in a first official statement since the infighting came out in the open.
"In front of Anjali Damania (AAP leader from Maharashtra), he told the same to workers of Mysore. Those funding the party were discouraged from doing so," said a joint statement by the four AAP leaders.
Prashant and Yadav were voted out from the party's PAC last week. The proposal to drop the two was introduced by Sisodia, seconded by Singh and supported by nine others including Gupta and Rai.
A section of the party headed by Arvind Kejriwal had alleged that the trio wanted to remove Kejriwal from the post of National Convenor.
"Two weeks before the election, when (AAP leader) Ashish Khetan called up Prashantji and requested him to head party's Delhi Dialogue initiative, Prashantji said that he wanted the party to lose and win only 20-22 seats. If the party loses only then the leadership will get some sense," the leaders claimed.
They claimed that Prashant would also threaten to call a press conference in the midst of a heated election campaign.
"For three days, 10 senior AAP leaders were trying to convince them not to address any press conference as this would have a negative impact on the party. At a time when the BJP and AAP were engaged in a cut throat battle, senior leader were busy convincing them and wasting their valuable time," the leaders alleged.
The party said that it was compelled to come out in the open despite taking a decision not to go before the public and as the two leaders were giving statements to the media.
"They were trying to portray as if the decision to drop them from the PAC was irresponsible and undemocratic," the leaders said.
The leaders claimed that the party has ample evidence that Yadav tried to malign Kejriwal's image and tried to portray a negative side of the organisation.
"Some senior editors in private have also said that during the Delhi election, Yadav again tried to malign Kejriwal's image by giving off the record information," the leaders charged.
Lashing out at Shanti Bhushan, the leaders said that the AAP leader not only spoke in favour of BJP's chief ministerial candidate Kiran Bedi but also supported a breakaway faction AAP Volunteers Vichar Manch.
"A few days before the election, Shanti Bhushan ji said he trusted Kiran Bedi more than Arvind (Kejriwal). All party workers were stunned listening to his statements. Volunteers started asking what was he doing in the AAP if he supported Bedi. He also gave many statements against Arvind," the leaders claimed.
Yesterday, AAP MP Bhagwant Mann demanded expulsion of the duo from the party saying early action against them would be in the interest of the party.
Talking to reporters outside the parliament, the Sangrur MP said both the leaders were hatching conspiracies against the party during Delhi Assembly elections.
“We should not forget that party is supreme and not any individual who so ever he may be,” he said, adding that their removal from the Political Affairs Committee of the party was a very mild action. They deserve more,” he said.