AAP workers get ready for D-Day

“We will have as many MPs in the Parliament as there will be the number of mangoes on this tree on counting day,” D D Sharma, an AAP worker, said in jest.

The mango tree in the office campus is not coincidental, he joked.

On the eve of the final fight between Narendra Modi and Arvind Kejriwal in Varanasi, the mood seemed upbeat among party workers at Aam Admi Party’s (AAP) office on Hanuman Road in Delhi.
“All of our volunteers have returned to Delhi on Saturday. Party workers will gather here as usual from morning and we will closely watch the elections on TV,” said Sharma.

With Kejriwal’s debut venture in Lok Sabha elections on Monday, AAP workers were seen sharing ideas, videos and experiences on Sunday.

Huddled together in front of a laptop, volunteers scanned through video footages of the party’s campaign trails in Varanasi.

“We are trying to understand the strengths and weaknesses of our campaigning skills so far. This will give us a fair idea of where we went wrong,” said Deepak Raj Singh, who was in Varanasi campaigning.

Singh said he felt the party should be able to deal more professionally with “BJP’s provocation” at rallies. “Some party workers react aggressively. We are still learning and will handle such situations better in future.”

While Sharma, who mans the help desk, diverted new volunteers to AAP workers present in Varanasi, the representatives there were busy coordinating with the new joinees.

“When he conducted first-hand surveys at rallies, we realised the number of locals present in AAP rallies surpassed that of BJP’s by almost 60 per cent. The majority of the crowd at Modi rallies was from Gujarat. This is what makes us confident of a win from Varanasi,” said Singh.

“Unlike the BJP, AAP encourages people to think before they cast their vote. BJP’s only concern is seeking a vote for Modi,” quipped Rajesh, another party worker.

As the conversation drifted from voters in Varanasi, party workers blamed the media for giving extensive coverage to Modi.

“If you browse through five channels in one minute, all five will be telecasting a Modi rally or interview. Even if there is a Kejriwal roadshow going on, there will be less coverage given to AAP. This is to drill into the public mind to vote for Modi and the media is responsible for this hype,” said Sharma.

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