By Chirayu Jain:
We are being fooled to believe that Kejriwal and Co. committed the biggest mistake of the movement when they resigned from Delhi Government on failure of Lokpal bill being passed. The truth is that they committed an even bigger mistake which no one wants us to know.
A week after their spectacular performance in Delhi Assembly Elections, there was an interesting article which appeared on a students platform titled ‘psychoanalysis of those who voted for AAP’. Dismissing it as a childish attempt in my arrogance, I did not read it. But in retrospect, I believe I ought to have opened the link.
It is very easy to profile those who voted for AAP in assembly elections. It was the new kid against established giants. Classic David versus Goliath. They were the underdogs. As it is said, everyone’s heart beats for the underdog, and that is what exactly happened, the delhites pinned their hopes of change and for a better future in the underdog. That is what led to their spectacular show in the assembly elections.
But something went wrong. Our hearts stopped beating for the ‘underdog’ over time. What was it? Why did it happen? What made it happen?
AAP became our unexpected underdog-winner. The underdog failed to comply with our view of how the winner should behave. Instead of usual ‘Government will look into it’ bullshit, day after day, the underdog announced policies and changes which he had been raring to do so, without a break. Announcing Rs. 1 crore compensation to the family of police officer eliminated by liquor mafia one day, and the next day announcing free water, electricity audit, SIT probe in 1984 riots, restructuring Jal Board, anti-corruption helpline and what not. Ultimately, the underdog resigned when he saw that his position of compromised winner wasn’t allowing him to continue fighting as freely as he wanted. He always remained an underdog who never gave up fighting even post elections and thence he failed to match our standards of a winner – no arrogance, no aura and no self-importance.
Thus, our heart stopped beating for the underdog.
But did it stop beating for the underdog so easily? Thankfully, this made up dichotomy of underdog and winner is not a universal phenomenon. There was something else which happened in the shadows which made us start despising and lampooning the underdog.
AAP’s biggest mistake was not quitting the government or trying to fight in 400+ constituencies, with total funds which may actually be a fraction of what an established party spends in just one constituency. Their biggest mistake was when they tried to take on Mukesh Ambani and co.
In the words of a highly respected journalist – between the period of Delhi elections and filing FIR against Ambani, AAP had become the darling of media. There was an AAP member on every panel, even when their policies and programmes were being seen sceptically, there was always an undercurrent of admiration.
The filing of FIR against Ambani changed everything. The undercurrent of admiration changed into overdrive of lampooning. Each and every step of AAP was now to be lampooned and met with cynicism by the media. Ambani, who is said to be the big brother of media, is alleged to have made sure every voice of accusation was silenced, or worse – lampooned.
In their inexperience, the underdog poked the sleeping dragon and got the brunt of it. Sadly, the delhites seem to be unconsciously punishing the underdog for doing so. Getting swept away with ‘ache din aa gaye’, we have stopped looking at the ground reality- The Municipal Corporations of Delhi. Bodies which have BJP majority and at the same time are one of the biggest hotbeds of corruption in Delhi. Actually there is no need to descend down to the level of Municipal Corporations, a look at our chosen Parliamentarians – comprising of Yedduruppa and Pappu Yadav amongst 180+ others has the highest number of MPs with criminal charges. Only if all BJP members were of supposed integrity as that of Narendra Modi, it would have been a different case, but the reality speaks otherwise. Its time Modi supporters realise that in Delhi elections, they wont be voting for Modi, but for plain old BJP.
If a stable and strong government was the need of the hour, India has got it in the recently concluded general elections. Now the need is to have an equally strong political watchdog which can provide effective opposition to the stable and strong government at national level. Congress as a watchdog opposition can never be considered with a serious thought, neither can the fractured model of third front be expected to cater to the need of opposition.
It is this time, when the Delhites vote which shall decide what India gets – a party government they desire in Delhi, or an effective emerging opposition at national level. Because whatever faults Aam Aadmi Party may have committed in their political judgments, their moral fiber remains intact and strong as ever.
Nadaan the woh shayad pehle, par badmash toh kabhi nahi.