Sum & Substance of AAP & AK

AAM Admi Party (AAP) has been in power in Delhi for over 16 months now under the leadership of Mr Arvind Kejriwal (AK). It is no secret that AK has no love lost for the Prime Minister and it seems to have rubbed off on all his party MLAs and colleagues. Most of his MLAs are first timers and raw in politics – a trait that AK too shares with them. Majority of them can safely be categorised as political upstarts just like their leader. They seem to have no idea on how to conduct themselves in public or when dealing with the central government. Some of them are crude to the point of being obnoxious. Senior AAP functionaries like Mr Ashutosh and Mr Ashish Khaitan lead the pack in this ignominious category. Disagreement or criticism of others is an important part of democracy. This can be done in a simple straight forward manner for maximum impact but AAP leaders invariably fall on ignoble theatrics that reflect the mindset of possibly the dregs of the society. These are harsh words but then anyone who has followed AK and his colleagues over the last two years will agree that this is indeed the way they go about their job.

If an elected Chief Minister of an Indian state terms the state-centre relationship as an equivalent of Indo Pak relations or refers to the duly elected Prime Minister of the nation as a ‘Psychopath and Coward’, it is certainly a matter of concern for the nation. If the Chief Minister is engaged in a continuous war of words and mudslinging with the Lt Governor of his state, even on routine matters, then there is something drastically wrong with his way of working or understanding of how to administer the state. If a Chief Minister says that the Lt Governor is carrying out his duties with the motive of seeking Vice Presidential nomination from the central government, it just reflects the prejudices he carries in his mind. When a Chief Minister supports students who shout anti India slogans and sing paeans in praise of a terrorist convicted for attacking the Indian parliament, then all who voted him power must hang their heads in shame. If the Chief Minister of a state encourages divisive and vote bank politics by his actions then it is obvious the voters made a wrong choice. This wrong choice is not limited to the Chief Minister alone; it also reflects the mindset of his entire legislative team of 67 MLAs since not a single MLA has the courage to ask the Chief Minister to desist from his daily antics that only degrade the high constitutional office that he is occupying apart from bringing their party a bad name.

AAP government has reduced the power and water tariff for low end users by about 30% after it came to power. It is an open secret that they compensated the power distribution companies in an indirect manner from state funds to achieve this. In the run up to the elections, AAP had promised to rework the powers costs after due audit to arrive at the correct cost of production per unit rather than the inflated values charged by the distribution companies in connivance with regulating authorities. In actual practice AAP has just adopted the easier route of subsidising the power.  Hoodwinking – yes that is exactly what AAP government has done in this regard. But then that seems to be the guiding principle of their working philosophy in most areas. This is reflected in all their dealings and the tall claims they make on a regular basis about the good work being done in the state of Delhi. The odd even scheme, about which AAP has made so much noise, was an exercise in futility from day one. It did not make any perceptible difference in the pollution levels in the city. Be it women safety, condition of roads, problem of water logging, dealing with the power distribution companies or cleaning of Delhi, AK and his government have achieved little or nothing on the ground. All the lofty promises of austerity and raising accountability levels sky high have been left on the way side once they came to power. Of late even their claims of honesty seem to be taking a major beating.

AK has shown a marked fixation to be recognised as an alternative to Mr Narendra Modi. While his aspirations can be lauded but in reality, based on his conduct and capabilities, it looks like a comparison between Raja Bhoj and Gangu Teli. For someone who was given a God sent opportunity to govern the easiest state in the country, he surely has made a mess of the same with his antics engulfed in negativity, self-righteousness and scepticism. But then AK, being an opportunist, has never been a dependable man. He left Anna Hazare in the midst of the Lok Pal campaign to seek greener pastures for himself. He sought support from Congress in his first term as Chief Minister of a coalition government. As soon as the going got tough, he whimpered and left the state of Delhi in a lurch by resigning in 49 days. Now that he has a huge mandate from the people, instead of using it to work for Delhi, his focus is on projecting himself at national level instead. What else can explain his over Rs. 500 Crore annual advertisement budget and the fact that his mug seems to be present on literally every poster that one sees in Delhi these days? AAP has to realise that in a democracy the government’s work has to speak for itself instead of squandering scarce public money on self praise.

AK’s penchant for fishing in troubled waters to extract political mileage both in Delhi and elsewhere is well known. His visit to Bisada in Ghaziabad on the cow meat controversy, extolling virtues of dubious characters like Kanhaiya Kumar and Umar Khalid (of JNU) engaged in anti national activities, blaming central government for Rohith Vemula’s suicide in Hyderabad University, raking up 1984 Sikh riots, appeasing minority communities selectively by making ad hoc grants to families of deceased, prove beyond doubt that he is not averse to playing divisive or appeasement politics. Last few weeks have seen all his energies directed at campaigns in Punjab, Goa and Gujarat with a total absence from Delhi. If those states are his or his party’s priorities it is fine, but then why hold the charge of Delhi government and administer it on a part time basis? In all probability the state of Delhi must be paying the expenses for all such outings? Will it be wrong to say that he is using his current chair to further his and his party’s interests in other states?

His indifference towards the three main Municipal Corporations in the state of Delhi is well known. This stems primarily from the fact that all three are run by Bhartiya Janta Party (BJP). AK forgets that just like his government in Delhi, the corporations too are run by elected representatives who have the mandate from people of Delhi. Instead of honouring the peoples’ mandate, AK and his government are constantly at war with them. Be it funds or other resources, there is always a bickering on such issues with a view to run down the BJP led corporations. The way AK refers to the corporations, it would seem as if the corporations were not part of the state of Delhi. The reality is that the state of Delhi is made up of five major regions which comprise of South, East and North Delhi Municipal Corporations, New Delhi Municipal Corporation and the Delhi Cantonment Board area. It is obvious that Delhi State Government has to govern Delhi through these entities that in turn are dependent on the Delhi Government. But AK and his government do not seem to understand this logic and invariably project Corporations as entities that are divorced from the state government. In fact AK hides his governance failures and the inability to deal with these corporations under this logic. It is no secret that AAP government spends hundreds of crores on useless advertisements while employees of corporations go without salaries for months. Is this AAP’s understanding of good governance?

AAP came to the fore with a promise of qualitative change for the better in Indian politics. However in actual practice they appear to have vitiated it further. One has often heard of terms like dirty politics, gutter politics, divisive politics, vote bank politics but AAP brand of politics is all this and more and perhaps the term that best describes their brand of politics is ‘faecal politics’.

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AK is obsessed with self-righteousness to the extent that he cannot see beyond his nose or realise that there could be others too in the country who are honest and doing some good work. He has taken the concept of ‘blame game’ to another level altogether. His self-righteousness has reached a limit where his motives certainly do not appear to be selfless anymore. The words of David Brin, American science fiction writer, come to mind when one thinks of AK. He said ‘Self-righteous people can talk themselves into forgetting they are part of a civilization. They can then feed on that culture, bringing it down. It’s happened many times in the past. It could happen to us’. This is the danger that people like AK bring to the table and in the end it will be Delhi and its people who will suffer for his follies.

Saroj Chadha, an engineering professional, is a successful entrepreneur. Having retired from the Indian Army after having served for over 23 years, he has also been a consultant for leading Indian and Multinational electrical companies. He lives in New Delhi.

9 Comments

  • So those who voted for Kejriwal are ” the dregs of society”? And no doubt its the ” elite” who criticise him? The chip on your shoulder is showing, Mr. Chaddha.

    • Dear Avay,

      The reference is to the AAP functionaries and their mind-set and not the voters. Please read the lines again. The voters voted in good faith but have been taken for a ride. Frankly even I voted for him in the first elections. So there is no chip on the shoulder feeling. Unfortunately some of us fail to analyse pragmatically and see the writing on the wall. Regards,

      • Just to clarify: ‘Dregs of Society’ means the undesirable part of the society. By no stretch of imagination can a normal Indian citizen or a voter be classified as undesirable part of society. So Avay’s insinuation is misleading to say the least. Undesirable are those who do undesirable acts, particularly when voters imposed confidence in them by voting for them. Lastly voters are in millions and bulk of the state’s population, dregs refers to that miniscule number of undesirable elements and can never be used for majority or the millions. English is a difficult language, no doubt.

    • Mr Shukla, it is not “elite class” which criticizes AK, it is “educated class”. Uneducated people do not understand macro economies and hence they are happy with getting subsidies and other cheap perks. They can’t think beyond these free bees. AK is the worst and most dangerous politician. He is more dangerous than Pakistan or China. In Punjab, he is saying that he will make it Drug Free while in Delhi, he is fighting for giving licences to grocery stores for keeping liquor. In Punjab, he is asking people not to give water to Haryana while in Delhi, he says that Haryana is not giving water to Delhi. Please understand his game. He is no saint. He tries to woo only uneducated and poor people who do not have access to social media or news.

  • Thanks Mr Saroj Chadha, You are elaborately explain how AK is continously get fool delhities and start in another places too. We should aware of such antinational politician.

  • From the first word it has smell of biased view. Seems like just written for a particular section.Like CM AK used words physhopath and not taking about AK47 and naxalite ko jungle bhej do comments BY PM. mind it he is our PM and i respect him a lot for his good work and especially sushma swaraj a great peace of work done by her helping every one asking her.

    • Dear Abhinav,
      In India there is one part which is election rhetoric and a lot is said there. The other part is when you hold a constitutional post and say things in non-election mode when you occupy the high chair entrusted to you. So there is a lot of difference. While Mr Modi has said his share of barbs and other things but it is mostly in election mode unlike AK who has no qualms about saying a lot of rubbish while he occupies the CM’s chair.
      You are right about some BJP Ministers doing a great job like Sushma, Prabhu, Gadkari, Goel and so on, unfortunately they are mostly long term measures and as common people most of us do not care for the same. we look at only today and what we can get today.

  • What ever we talk about Arvind Kejariwal and his close in his party about their remarks on PM, Lt Governor and other functionaries will be far less to describe their substandard behaviour and low mentality.No body has so much time to read voluminous comments on them and I personally feel that AK came t power not as a choice but by negative voting. people of Delhi were so much fade up with Congress that they voted for AAP .and their mistake should be corrected by them in the next elections.

  • Aam Admi Party workers held up traffic inconveniencing thousands of Aam Admi commuters in Delhi yesterday after their MLA from Okhla area was arrested. Yet no word from the honourable CM or his deputy to advise their supporters not to resort to such misbehaviour. Is this the way AAP claims to be for AAM AADMI? Just proves that power does corrupt most. AAP MP compromises Parliamentary security and his own colleague says he was reeking of liquor when in parliament.
    ‘Modi Ji arrests AAP MLA from Okhla’ is not only outrageous but a very base statement showing a base mind set. A BJP MLA too was arrested on similar charge on same day in Bihar. Law has to be equal for all and allowed to take its course as most politicians advocate – till one of their own is in the net.

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