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Arvind Kejriwal woos farmers on eventful day 1 of Punjab visit


Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal today wooed farmers by promising sops like loan and interest waiver as he started his four-day visit to boost AAP’s poll campaign in Punjab and vowed to stay put in the state until the ruling Badals are “sent to jail”.

Heckled by activists of BJP, SAD and Congress at New Delhi and Ludhiana railway stations, the AAP national convenor said neither he nor his party is going to be “cowed down” by such “pre-planned” protests, or “CDs” and accusations which he alleged are being manufactured under a conspiracy by political rivals.

“Today the farmers of Punjab are in a bad situation, they are committing suicide. There was a time, the farmers of Punjab were considered to be the happiest in the country,” he said at a press conference here.

He said if AAP comes to power in Punjab the farmers of the state will be made debt-free and the loan of poor farmers will be waived.

“For rest of the farmers, loan interest will be waived and till December 2018, all farmers of Punjab will be rid of debt,” he said.

Kejriwal, whose party will come out with a ‘Kisan Manifesto’ soon, said, “We have held several meetings, people have given suggestions and this will be reflected in this blueprint.”

He was unsparing in his attack on Punjab chief minister Parkash Singh Badal and his son and deputy chief minister Sukhbir Singh Badal.

“Now, I want to say that I have come (to Punjab) and I will be pitching my tent here. Till the time we don’t make them bite dust and send the Badals to jail, I will camp in Punjab and I am not going to leave this place. In between, however, I will go to Delhi for 2-3 days, but I will not leave from here till we send the Badals to jail,” he said.

His visit comes at a time when AAP is grappling with a series of controversies including removal of its Punjab chief Sucha Singh Chotepur affter a “sting CD” purportedly showed him taking money from a ticket aspirant and the sacking of Delhi minister Sandeep Kumar over a sex scandal.

“Polls in Punjab are round the corner. When I had come to Punjab last time and during my visits earlier also, people of the state had warned me saying when polls will draw near Sukhbir Singh Badal will hatch some conspiracy against you (AAP), CDs will come to fore, accusations will be made, people will protest etc. Now that time has started, 2-3 people get together (on routine basis) and level any accusation,” he claimed.

“I have come to know that Sukhbir Badal has got 63 fake CDs made against us, he has hired a video company, which comes out with 2-4 CDs now and then,” he claimed.

“Now, everyday these 2-3 CDs will come, accusations will be levelled against us, but I am happy that people of Punjab are wise, they fully understand the conspiracy and the gameplan of the Badals.

“But people of Punjab are wise, they know Sukhbir Badal is behind it and no one is going to believe or listen to them,” he said.

Kejriwal vowed to send the ruling Badals behind bars, if AAP forms the next government in the state.


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