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Kejriwal govt wins confidence vote amid walkout by BJP legislators


Published on: September 1, 2022 | Updated on: September 1, 2022

New Delhi: Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal speaks during a special session of Delhi Legislative Assembly, in New Delhi, Thursday, Sept. 1, 2022. Delhi Deputy CM Manish Sisodia is also seen. (Photo: PTI)

NEW DELHI: The Delhi Assembly on Thursday passed the confidence motion tabled by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal even as five BJP MLAs staged a walkout after their party colleagues were marshalled out of the House following an argument with the deputy speaker.

While all the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) MLAs present in the House voted in favour of the motion as expected, there was no vote against it due to the absence of BJP legislators.

Three BJP MLAs -- Vijender Gupta, Abhay Verma and Mohan Singh Bisht -- were marshalled out as they "argued" with Deputy Speaker Rakhi Birla, who did not heed their demand to take up their calling attention notices before a discussion on the motion. The remaining legislators walked out in protest soon after.

In the Assembly, Kejriwal also referred to the upcoming Assembly elections in Gujarat, saying his party's vote share in that state has increased by four per cent after the Central Bureau of Investigation (CBI) raids against his deputy Manish Sisodia.

He said this vote share will increase by two per cent "if Sisodia is arrested".

"The CBI raided Sisodia, went to his village and searched his bank locker. CBI people said they did not find anything against him but they are under pressure to arrest him," Kejriwal claimed.

Outside the Assembly, he told reporters that Sisodia is a "pauper" and it was obvious that the probe agency could not find anything substantial.

The prime minister has given a "certificate of honesty" to Sisodia and the AAP, he said.

Kejriwal also alleged that the BJP tried to buy his party MLAs but none of them accepted the offer.

Trying to project the AAP as an alternative to the BJP, he said there are currently only two parties at the national level -- 'Kattar Imandar (hardcore honest) party and Kattar Beimaan (hardcore corrupt) party'.

"Absolutely corrupt party lacks educated people while 'hardcore honest' party has those with good education, genuine IIT degrees," he said.

"They are spending Rs 20-50 crore to buy MLAs. Am I doing anything wrong if I want to build schools and hospitals," Kejriwal sought to know.

The chief minister said both his children studied in Indian Institutes of Technology, and he wanted to provide the "same education to every child in India".

Kejriwal also said his government is worried about the increasing law and order issues in the capital.

"There should be no politics in law and order and safety of women in Delhi. We will extend all cooperation to the Lieutenant Governor and the Centre on it," he said.

On LG Vinai Kumar Saxena warning legal action against the AAP for levelling allegations of corruption against him, Kejriwal said, "We should welcome any probe if we are in public life."