JALANDHAR: There will be a direct contest only between Akali Dal-BJP combine and Congress in 2017 Assembly polls in Punjab as people will "reject" AAP for "doing nothing" in Delhi, Deputy Chief Minister and Shiromani Akali Dal president Sukhbir Singh Badal said today.
Mr Badal further said Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has done totally "opposite" to what it had promised in Delhi and the party had "nothing" to offer for the development of Punjab.
"Congress can be considered as an opposition for the SAD- BJP combine in the 2017 Assembly elections as people will reject AAP for its failure to provide any relief to people of Delhi," Mr Badal said in Jalandhar after flagging off the first train to Varanasi under Mukhya Mantri Tirath Yatra Scheme from Jalandhar City railway station
However, he said that there were "some seats" which may see a tripartite tussle without naming any such constituencies.
He also dared AAP to announce a candidate for Khadoor Sahib by-poll slated for February 13.
"Sensing defeat at Khadoor Sahib, AAP is running away from the electoral field as people had already rejected them in Talwandi Sabo and Patiala by polls," he said.
SAD has announced Ravinder Singh Brahmpura as the candidate for the bypoll from SAD-BJP combine, he said.
Questioning the credentials of Delhi Chief Minister and AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal, Mr Badal said that AAP had nothing to do with the "common man" and asked if it was justified to spend Rs. 532 crore on "personal propaganda" by Mr Kejriwal.
"To please all their MLAs, he has appointed all of them as chairmans or chief parliamentary secretaries, besides enhancing their salaries to Rs. 2.50 lakh per month," he said.
Answering a question about the Panama incident, Mr Badal said that the Punjab government had raised the issue with the Union External Affairs Ministry and had been assured by them of taking all possible steps on the issue.
He also directed the Police department to immediately crackdown the illegal travel agents and appealed to the media houses to stop publishing the advertisements of illegal travel agents.
Reports had been doing rounds that over 20 youths from Punjab had drowned near Panama, when a boat in which they were travelling from Colombian port town of Turbo, capsized on its journey to the US.
Meanwhile, speaking on the reports of inclusion of Manpreet Singh Badal in Congress, Mr Badal said that it would not have any impact on the prospects of Congress in Punjab as he was already exposed and "known for shifting his stands like a pendulum".
Earlier, while flagging off the first train to Varanasi under Mukhya Mantri Tirath Darshan Yatra from Jalandhar Railway station, Mr Badal said that this initiative of Chief Minister Parkash Singh Badal would strengthen the peace, communal harmony in the state.