Is AAP Really The Alternative We Seek Or Is It Just Populist Adventurism?

Posted on January 27, 2014 in Politics

By Anshika Srivastava:

2013 was truly a momentous time in the history of Indian democracy. A milestone that completely revolutionized ‘power play’. Well, it’s far too early to say anything at a national level, but certainly for Delhi. AAP’s stellar performance in the 2013 state elections, out manoeuvring the conventional veterans of the game —‘Cong’ and ‘BJP’ was an eye opener, a testimony to the fact that we wanted change. A political system that truly in it’s sense was ‘of the people, by the people and for the people’.


Though there are many who outrightly discredit APP for a diverse reasons, but lets not forget to acknowledge them for the mass support they have mustered and the change they have brought in the realm of Indian politics, and that too in such a short span of time! I’m not here to reiterate the successful saga of Aam Aadmi Party but their achievements are worth considering.

It’s old news, the new ‘masala’ the media is pouncing on like hungry ravenous dogs is the controversies, malicious rumours (some facts) about the AAP leaders, the recent ‘dharna’, reckless policies etc. Newspapers, tabloids and T.V. channels are flooded with them, leaving the common man perplexed and in a state of quandary. Hearing or reading about the controversies that have risen up against AAP suddenly over the past few weeks makes us question our decision and the integrity of the party, which so vociferously fought against the evils of the other parties.

Maybe our hopes and expectations were too high and that has left us disenchanted and dejected. Aam Aadmi Party’s recent debacle at the political front has left the people baffled and dubious about AAP’s true intentions and promises to make a better government. It’s no different than the unethical and corrupt parties it fought against.

Since he was sworn in as the youngest Chief Minister of Delhi, Arvind Kejriwal has made some reckless and impulsive decisions, for example — the ‘ Jantar Darbar’ incident where approximately 3,000 -4,000 of AAP supporters turned up, creating a mayhem and near stampede situation, or lets go the more prominent and recent one – the ‘dharna’ led by Kejriwal against Home Minister Sushil Kumar Shinde demanding executive authority over the Delhi Police which led to the disruption of routes and gridlocked traffic jam causing a lot of nuisance for everyday commuters. That’s not how a CM behaves. We truly understand Arvind’s desire to make it a more ‘people oriented government’ and outrightly fight against injustices. But in actuality, its marked by a strong sense of vigilantism .

Its only been a month and in the light of current events, it looks like Aam Aadmi Party’s political career will end even before it takes off properly.

AAP is engulfed in an array of controversies. It’s accused of being racist and sexist which is evident from Kumar Vishwas’s derogatory comments on nurses from Kerala. An FIR was also charged against him for making profane statements that hurt the religious sentiments of a community. Somnath Bharti’s raid at Khirki extension, where people from the African community reside and which according to him is a hub of drug and prostitution, was also alleged of assaulting African women. His abhorrent actions and taking the law in his hands was highly condemned by the public and the opposition party, which is now demanding his arrest. Inspite of all this, Arvind Kejriwal refuses to take any serious action against his minister, which I feel is utterly disgraceful of AAP.

The list goes on, another example is where Bhushan’s statement on Kashmir and related security matters was profoundly criticised by all, including his party members. With the route that AAP has taken, it looks more of stupidity and foolishness than them being naive and inexperienced in the game of politics.

Another drawback is AAP’s lack of a coherent ideology. In an interview, Yogendra Yadav denied that the party was socialist and said “binaries of 20th century, either Left or Right do not make sense”, this disregard for any ideology can have ruinous consequences as history has already proved. An ideology is extremely crucial for any party because without it, there will just be unrest and anarchy.

As there are always two sides to a coin and the situation here is the same. The rumours that we hear about AAP could be true or baseless. It can all be a political gimmick to gain power or they can be innocent victims of shrewd and cunning tactics of BJP, which is threatened by the bourgeoning popularity of the Aam Aadmi Party.

The reality is distorted; newspapers and various new channels do get you the information but the way they present and what they present makes a lot of difference. And why not? Everyone has their own thinking, opinion and ideology that may influence their take on the society or any political matter.

I think that is one of the greatest advantage of a democracy, you have a variety of opinions leading to deeper comprehension of any situation from all aspects for the good of all citizens.

I’ll end with saying just one thing, I guess we are too early to judge AAP without giving it a true chance to exhibit their worthiness. I mean we gave the Congress 128 years, BJP 34 years and the Aam Aadmi Party just 1 month. That is unfair!