AAP explores backdoor route to regain control of Delhi state

Arvind Kejriwa's Aam Admi Party, after winning just four parliamentary seats in India's general election – far from the game-changing role it expected to play in the formation of the new government – on Tuesday did a volte face on its earlier stand, saying it is prepared to again explore possibilities to form a Delhi government.

During his brief stint of less than a month as Delhi chief minister, Kejriwal huffed and puffed before he and his party quit. Now, despite having gone to court asking for fresh elections in Delhi, the AAP on Tuesday asked Delhi's Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung not to dissolve the assembly.

The AAP has gone its usual route of seeking a referendum asking people whether it should make a bid for forming the government; even though both the Congress (its previous supporter in Delhi) and the Bharatiya Janata Party have categorically declared that they would not support another AAP government in Delhi.

The surprise move came on Tuesday morning when AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal met Jung for what was described right through the day as a "coutesy call". But, at night, a letter from Kejriwal asking the Lt Governor for time "to consider options" was leaked out; and the AAP admitted the move.

Earlier in the day, AAP had told the media that they would make an important announcement in the evening. However, in the afternoon the Congress declared that it had no intention of supporting the AAP.

Senior AAP leader Manish Sisodia said, "We have been roaming across the country and have been told that we should not have quit government. While we left the government on moral grounds, the end sufferer is the common man, for whom water and electricity has become more expensive.

''We realised that we needed to go back to the public. We are extremely sorry for putting the people of Delhi through a tough time and would like their opinion on our next course of action."

Sources in AAP said a majority of its MLAs in the state assembly did not want a fresh election now, as the "Modi wave" would probably flatten them.

AAP had won 28 seats in its debut Assembly elections in December last year and had later formed the government with outside support from the Congress's eight MLAs.