The move comes after senior leaders from Punjab wrote to AAP national convener Arvind Kejriwal asking him to remove Sucha Singh Chhotepur citing bribery allegations
New Delhi: The political affairs committee (PAC), the highest decision making body of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), on Friday decided to sack the party’s Punjab convener Sucha Singh Chhotepur and has formed a committee to probe allegations of corruption against him.
Punjab goes to polls early next year; AAP is contesting assembly elections in the state for the first time.
“The PAC expressed great concern over the corruption allegations that have been raised against Sucha Singh Chhotepur. This party has come to fight against corruption and such allegations are treated very seriously. We have removed him as the convener of the Punjab committee with immediate effect and a committee under Jarnail Singh has been set up to probe the allegations," AAP spokesperson and MP from Sangrur in Punjab, Bhagwant Mann told reporters after the meeting.
He added, “This committee will meet all the parties involved and a final decision will be taken then. He will get a chance to keep his side. In a press conference today he made baseless allegations against Arvind Kejriwal. They were made to distract the public from the corruption allegations that have been made. The party has zero tolerance towards corruption."
The move comes after senior leaders from Punjab wrote to AAP national convener and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal asking him to immediately remove Chhotepur after a controversy over a video clip allegedly showed him taking money.
“The allegation is that Chhotepur sought ₹ 60 lakh from a ticket aspirant and the deal was fixed at ₹ 30 lakh. The person has already paid him ₹ 4 lakh, of which Chotepur returned ₹ 3 lakh. He kept the rest of the amount with him," Mann said.
Addressing a press conference in Chandigarh earlier in the day, Chhotepur said “I am saddened that the party, instead of defending me has levelled allegations against me." On the purported sting operation against him, Chhotepur said it was a “conspiracy" hatched by “my own friends within the party."
He alleged that Kejriwal had tried to put his religion at stake for the manifesto debacle.
The AAP had found itself in the middle of controversy at their youth manifesto launch in July. The manifesto had a photograph of the Golden Temple and its holy water along with the party’s election symbol, a broom, which sparked a controversy.
PTI contributed to this story
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