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Delhi Congress chief Lovely’s resignation lays bare factional feud

However, Lovely asserted on Sunday that his resignation only applied to his role as the chief of the Congress’ Delhi unit and that he wouldn’t be joining any other political party.

Arvinder Singh LovelyNew Delhi: Amidst the ongoing Lok Sabha elections, the Congress faced a significant blow after its Delhi unit chief, Arvinder Singh Lovely, stepped down from the leadership role. Lovely’s resignation comes as a critique of the party’s alliance with the AAP and the recent statements made by Congress candidates Kanhaiya Kumar and Udit Raj.

However, clarifying his stance, Lovely asserted on Sunday that his resignation only applied to his role as the chief of the Congress’ Delhi unit and that he wouldn’t be joining any other political party.

In his letter sent to Congress president Mallikarjun Kharge on Saturday, Lovely also said that he found himself “handicapped” as all unanimous decisions taken by senior Delhi unit leaders have been “unilaterally vetoed” by AICC Delhi in-charge Deepak Babaria.

The Delhi Congress unit was against the alliance with AAP but the party high command went ahead with it, Lovely said, as his resignation brought to the fore the party’s factional feud.

Addressing a press conference on Sunday, Lovely appeared to reject suggestions that he stepped down as he was not given a ticket and asserted that he was not joining any other political party.

“Some people are spreading misinformation that I was upset over ticket(distribution). It is not like that. You all know that I introduced the candidates by holding a press conference three days ago,” Lovely said.

“I have only resigned as Delhi Congress chief and I am not joining any political party,” he added.

Lovely’s clarification came after Congress ex-MLA Asif Mohammad Khan claimed that the BJP would field Lovely from the East Delhi constituency, replacing Harsh Malhotra, while AAP leader Saurabh Bharadwaj also fuelled speculation about the saffron party changing its candidate.

With a section of leaders demanding the removal of Babaria, the AICC Delhi in-charge said it was “unfortunate” that Lovely’s resignation came at a time when the general elections in the country were underway, but asserted that it won’t affect the Congress, while the Aam Aadmi Party termed it an internal matter of its ally.

The BJP said it was an “unnatural alliance” forged by the leadership of the AAP and Congress to “shield their corruption,” but their party workers had not accepted it.

Lovely had resigned from the post of Delhi Congress president in 2015 as well. He joined the BJP in 2017 but returned to the Congress almost nine months later.

A senior Congress leader said a decision on appointing a new Delhi unit chief will be taken soon since the Lok Sabha elections are less than a month away.

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