Delhi's ruling Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Thursday said that businessman Sushil Gupta, one of its Rajya Sabha candidates, will help the party expand and accomplish its "Mission Haryana".
AAP Delhi convenor Gopal Rai took up to Facebook Live to justify the party's decision of electing the two outsiders -- Narain Dass Gupta and Sushil Gupta - as its candidates for Rajya Sabha seats which triggered criticism from opposition parties.
Dismissing the allegations of "buying" the candidates, he said such allegations aimed at putting down Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal.
Rai said Sushil Gupta, a businessman and an ex-Congress politician, who runs charitable schools and hospitals in Delhi and Haryana, was picked due to "practical reasons" and N.D. Gupta for his expertise on the economy.
"We had formed government in Delhi with a dream of eliminating corruption, establishing Swaraj. But the Centre is not letting us work. They are being able to do this as Delhi is not a full state.
"The party needs a full state for bringing about the changes it desires. We tried that in Punjab. But Congress and BJP did not let us do that. The party feels that it can form government in Haryana. We have chosen him keeping our mission Haryana in mind," he said.
Earlier in the day, AAP leader Sanjay Singh, Sushil Gupta and chartered accountant Narain Gupta filed their nomination for the three Rajya Sabha seats that will fall vacant when the tenure of Congress members Janardhan Dwivedi, Parvez Hashmi and Karan Singh end.
It would be for the first time that the AAP, which officially has 66 members in the 70-member Delhi Assembly including some dissidents, will elect members to the upper house.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)