AAP: Left out of ministry, Binny storms out of meeting

The AAP faced its first post-election crisis on Tuesday, after MLA Vinod Kumar Binny, upset at being left out of Arvind Kejriwal's cabinet, stormed out of a meeting at the latter's residence in Kaushambi. Party sources said Yogendra Yadav was trying to pacify Binny until late at night, amid speculation that the MLA had threatened to hold a tell-all press conference on Wednesday.

"There is no problem as such; we are speaking to him (Binny). He may not have understood the role that had been thought of for him, but the matter will be sorted out by Wednesday morning," an AAP official said.

Sanjay Singh, a member of the party's Political Affairs Committee, said the constitution of the cabinet was largely Kejriwal's decision. "It is the prerogative of the chief minister and there is no discord in the party," he said.

Sources said the party offered Binny the role of parliamentary secretary to the chief minister, but he was holding out for a cabinet berth.

"This will hurt the image of the party. It goes against the claim that no AAP leader will hanker after posts. However, the decision on the members of the cabinet will not be changed under any circumstances," a senior party leader said.

Members of Binny's family confirmed he was unhappy. They said he deserved a ministerial berth for "defeating a heavyweight like A K Walia, former health minister, from Laxmi Nagar".

Binny left the Congress to contest as an independent in the municipal elections from Laxmi Nagar. He won two consecutive terms as a councillor from ward number 214. "He also held regular mohalla sabhas and was one of those who mooted the idea to the AAP," a supporter said.

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