Kejriwal is back with Old Tactics
‘If you are against the formation of a government, which involves buying MLA’s for 20 crore apiece and if you want new democratically elected government in New Delhi, then do come at Jantar Mantar on August 3’ proclaimed Arvind Kejriwal’s latest radio message. The main agenda of the rally was to build pressure on the central government to hold elections in Delhi, and it was also Aam Aadmi Party’s first rally since the party’s smashing defeat in the Lok Sabha elections.
The rally is said to have received an impressive response as the sweltering heat of Delhi didn’t dissuade thousands of peoples. Kejriwal was welcomed with loud cheers as supporters and volunteers wearing party caps waved the Indian flag. Kejriwal fiercely talked about how the political parties made fun of them when they gather under Anna Hazare in 2011, daring to fight in elections. He said now the tables have turned as now AAP is asking to prove whether BJP and Congress are courageous enough to face elections in Delhi.
Kejriwal must have forgotten the other turn of tables, which is the reason why he held the Jantar Mantar rally on Sunday. AAP garnered enough seats in the Delhi Assembly to become the 2nd largest party and even landed in power. Congress-run central government denied AAP’s version of anti-corruption Lokpal bill and after strings of public protests, failed meetings and total lack of strategy, Kejriwal decided to leave the government, which he himself has accepted as a mistake and apologized for it. The decision also gave a very disappointing turnout in the Lok Sabha elections for AAP.
Now, Kejriwal’s party stands where it stood a year ago. In fact, he has reckless squandered the goodwill of those who elected his people. Kejriwal wants to revive things that have brought him to prominence and power. But, it all seems very difficult to recreate. He needs an agenda to pull the people in, at least to woo his traditional supporters. In an effort to stay relevant, only think Kejriwal could do is demand for elections. A revival of AAP by demanding assembly elections just look like a scatter-brained approach. Last Tuesday, the party filed a petition that questions the president rule in Delhi and demands an immediate dissolution.
Even if dissolution of president’s rule happens soon, a decent show by BJP at center and Delhi is enough to thwart the future plans of Kejriwal. People’s interest could also be induced through trend-setting corporate media, but this time around the media have zero interest in covering the AAP. The Jantar Mantar rally on Sunday received minimal coverage. The same national corporate media, last year, hailed Arvind Kejriwal as the messiah of Indian democracy. The positive popularity was consumed by strategy-less decisions and it will be a long road for him and his party to make it into the headlines.
Kejriwal also lashed at the national parties for not showing interest on solving Delhi people’s problems. He talked about power tariff hikes, power cuts, degrading water supply, plight of contractual workers, corruption and inflation. But, what would Kejriwal do, even if he got elected once again: stage dharnas on a daily basis against the ‘corrupted, evil’ central government? Or would think about forming a systematic plan of action?