AAP founder stays in party, his MLA critic suspended

New Delhi: Delhi’s ruling AAP averted a major crisis on Wednesday when its disgruntled founder leader Kumar Vishwas agreed not to quit while an MLA who took him on was suspended from the party.
After indicating a day earlier that he may quit the Aam Aadmi Party, Kumar Vishwas on Wednesday attended a meeting of the party’s Political Affairs Committee (PAC) at Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal’s residence.
“The PAC has decided to suspend Amanatullah Khan from the party,” Deputy Chief Minister and Kumar Vishwas’ childhood friend Manish Sisodia told reporters.
The decision came three days after Khan alleged that Kumar Vishwas was conspiring to break the party and plotting a coup against Kejriwal at the behest of the BJP and RSS.
The AAP also announced a three-member committee of party leaders Pankaj Gupta, Atishi Marlena and Ashutosh to determine why Khan made the allegation against the poet-politician.
Appearing before the media with Sisodia, Kumar Vishwas said he was happy a dialogue among party members had resumed.
Kumar Vishwas again insisted he had no desire to become the Chief Minister or convener of the party.
After the PAC meeting, Sisodia went to meet Khan, the Okhla MLA.
While the party said he went to communicate the PAC’s decision, informed sources said it was meant to placate the suspended legislator.
Khan said he was pained by the party’s decision but would not comment on the Kumar Vishwas issue. He added he would speak only in party forums.
Also on Wednesday, Kumar Vishwas was named the AAP in-charge of Rajasthan, where assembly elections will be held next year.
Sisodia said Kumar Vishwas had been given the task of strengthening the AAP in Rajasthan and the party “will fight election in the state under his leadership”.The BJP and Congress slammed the infighting in the AAP.
BJP leader Vijender Gupta called the AAP a “team of losers” and said the party was facing infighting as it had lost the municipal elections.
Congress leader Ajay Maken called the AAP the B-team of the BJP and said not just Kumar Vishwas, even Kejriwal and Sisodia had an understanding with the BJP.