Barely 24 hours after Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Chief Arvind Kejriwal said he would announce the party’s CM face in Punjab, it launched a phone number — 70748 70748 — for people to choose a candidate.
Ruling himself out of the Punjab CM-face race, the Delhi CM said people of Punjab should call/ message or WhatsApp to give their choice of CM candidate. “We want to leave the choice to the 3 crore people of Punjab. The people can give us their choice by 5 pm, January 17.” This is the first time such a methodology is being used to identify a CM candidate by popular vote," he said.
The news may not augur well for Punjab's biggest face for AAP with the leadership seemingly showing a reluctance on announcing Bhagwant Mann as its CM face. The choice of the CM has now been left to the people, even as the party supremo has ruled himself out.
“Bhagwant Mann is most dear to me. He is the biggest face. I told Mann to let us declare him as the CM face. But it was his idea to go to the people for CM face. Bhagwant Mann, too, said don't decide CM face behind closed doors,” he added.
The move comes at a time when other parties, too, are yet to declare their CM candidates. The opinion poll by AAP comes shortly after PCC chief Navjyot Sidhu said "people and not the party high command will decide the CM of Punjab".
Addressing a press conference in Mohali, Kejriwal said: “We feel two-three more seats may be required. So my appeal to our supporters is to give us a strong push. Please vote for us. Most parties nominate their sons or their daughters-in-law as the CM candidate. But people will decide on ours.”