New Delhi: The anti-corruption crusader who sold dreams to the middle class and youngsters in the country about giving a clean governance and corruption free governments is in a muddle. Arvind Kejriwal, who was given a massive mandate for his cause has not only lost it but also emerged as any other politician in the country.
When the UPA was scam-ridden and people were looking for a hero in the shining armour to save them from the corrupt leaders, Anna Hazare started a movement against corruption in 2011. The movement received impetus from April 2011, as anti-corruption activist Anna Hazare began a hunger strike at the Jantar Mantar in New Delhi. The main aim was an introduction of the Jan Lokpal Bill to reduce corruption in the Indian government. People across the country and various political parties, celebrities from several fields supported the movement.
This is when Arvind Kejriwal came into the lime light. After the success of the movement and huge response from youth and middle classes, Kejriwal launched Aam Aadmi Party and entered politics. He campaigned against the then Delhi Chief Minister Sheil Dikshit government’s corruption and finally won the election.
The political journey of Kejriwal started in an electrifying manner- a man who has a cause, a crusader who would fight corruption and give a clean government to the suffering masses. During his first term as Chief Minister Kejriwal has taken up some issues which do good to aam aadmi, like mohalla clinics and even improving government schools. But his constant tiffs with the then Lieutenant Governor of Delhi Jung overshadowed all the good work he had done. He always tried to project himself as a victim of the central government’s vicious strategies, whenever he did not have answers to issues.
AAP’s failure to walk the talk is showing severely upon the party presently. The people who were on his side, when he wanted to pursue the noble cause are now frustrated. Many high profile exits tarnished its image. The alternative politics it proposed withered away due to its greed for power. Many analysts criticised the party that, its desperation to form the government in Delhi at any cost had seeded their downfall and everything after that had a snowball effect and culminated on Sunday with money laundering allegations levelled against it.
The washing of dirty linen in the public started after AAP Minister Kapil Mishra was sacked on the pretext of inefficiency. But speculation was that he was removed because he supported Kumar Vishwas who rebelled against the AAP supremo. While Kejriwal could patch up with Kumar Vishwas, he wanted to punish those who supported him in his rebellion. Hence Kapil was thrown out and it boomeranged in such a way that it has brought down not only Kejriwal but the whole party.
When Kapil Mishra levelled corruption allegations against Kejriwal, he chose to dismiss them as not worth answering. Kapil Mishra also levelled allegations against Health Minister Satyendra Jain but also Kejriwal’s brother in law (who passed away last week). Incidentally, Satyendra Jain was facing money laundering accusation and was under IT and ED scanner.
In fact, Kejriwal never answered the allegations. Instead, he went on with EVM tampering fiasco by holding a special Delhi Assembly session. He wanted to cover his mistakes, defeats and divert the attention of the public by telling them that EVMs can be tampered with. His efforts paid a little as the media was excited about it and went on with telecasts. But, soon as they realised that they are undermining a Constitutional body and also Election Commission is going ahead with its hackathon (hacking EVMs) the story was back to square one.
Arvind Kejriwal who nursed a huge ego after he became the Chief Minister of Delhi second time with a huge mandate also harboured national dreams. He went on to expand his party’s base in Punjab and Goa. But the poll drubbing made him more adamant. He refused to accept the truth that he needs some more maturity in politics. But he went on with EVM tampering campaign, which might eventually comeback to him.
Now, AAP is proving that it’s no more an anti-corruption crusader or giver of clean politics. Kejriwal has to realise that blaming Centre for his failures will not yield him any sympathy. Not anymore after all these developments. Other than the allegations that were levelled there are cases against 21 AAP MLAs’ for office for profit. If the Election Commission takes a decision after the charges are proved, the MLAs’ will be disqualified.
In this background, can AAP survive as a credible entity?