A day after he quit the Aam Aadmi Party, advocate Harvinder Singh Phoolka on Friday said the decision to convert an anti-corruption movement into a political party in 2012 was a “wrong” one, PTI reported. He was referring to his former party, which was formed by some activists of the India Against Corruption movement. Phoolka said he would continue his fight from a non-political platform.
“Converting an anti-corruption movement into a political party in 2012 was wrong,” he said. Phoolka, who represents petitioners in the 1984 anti-Sikh violence cases, said that he would not contest the upcoming Lok Sabha elections “although after the conviction of Sajjan Kumar, people in Punjab said I could easily win from any seat”.
Last month, former Congress leader Sajjan Kumar was sentenced to life imprisonment in a case related to the 1984 anti-Sikh violence.
Phoolka’s resignation came amid speculation of a possible alliance between the Congress and the AAP for the 2019 Lok Sabha polls. In July, he had threatened to quit the party if it allied with the Congress, saying such a move would absolve the “alleged perpetrators of the 1984 anti-Sikh violence”.
Phoolka on Friday said that he would continue to fight on a non-political platform to ensure that Congress leaders Kamal Nath and Jagdish Tytler are also punished book in connection with the violence. Nath is now the chief minister of Madhya Pradesh.
The senior advocate said there is a need to start a movement like the one taken up by activist Anna Hazare in 2011. “Many who have left AAP and others, including lawyers and doctors, need to unite to form an organisation parallel to political parties,” said Phoolka, who had joined the party in January 2014 and lost the Lok Sabha elections that year from Ludhiana.
Phoolka said that within six months he would form an organisation to take up issues like the drug menace and the politicisation of the Shiromani Gurdwara Parbandhak Committee in Punjab.
In response to Phoolka’s remarks, the Aam Aadmi Party said the advocate had changed his earlier opinion. “We joined electoral politics and Phoolka also joined it with us and fought the Lok Sabha and Assembly elections,” said senior party leader and Rajya Sabha MP Sanjay Singh. “What can I do if he has now changed his opinion?”