Rebels complain about tickets, lack of democracy in Kejriwal's party

The rebel faction of the Aam Aadmi Party is lobbying to call a National Council meeting to resolve the “internal democracy crisis” within the party. 

The former National Council member, Ashwini Upadhyay, who had hit out at AAP for what he considered to be unjust distribution of tickets, said that those unhappy with the party are coming together. He said that the party will suffer a huge loss for fielding 'parachute' candidates.  

Upadhyay said that he is scheduled to meet AAP’s Gurgaon district convener Ramesh Yadav and other members. On Sunday, Yadav had resigned alleging that active members of the party were being ignored. 

He said that the dissent within the party is growing. “The party had decided who will contest from which seat soon after Delhi Assembly election results were announced,” he said. 

“AAP had received over 1,700 applications for party’s candidature,” Upadhyay said, alleging that many candidate names were pre-decided. 

He said that the party’s volunteer base is eroding in the city. A faction of AAP volunteers on Sunday had protested at Jantar Mantar against four party nominees – Ashish Khetan, Ashutosh and Rajmohan Gandhi.

AAP member Mithun Khanagwal said that for the Delhi Assembly election the party had more over 10,500 active volunteersk. 

“Now the people are getting disoriented. For instance, nobody is supporting Ashutosh at Chandni Chowk. Even our own legislators are not helping them. There are five MLAs in that parliamentary constituency,” he said. 

Upadhyay said that the party’s internal survey after the Delhi Assembly election pointed out that AAP would be winning at least four-five Lok Sabha seats in Delhi. “The way ticket distribution was done, the party’s chances would be dampened,” he said. 

“AAP has acted no different than other parties. Tickets were given on the basis of factors such as caste,” said Upadhyay. He alleged that ‘high command culture’ in AAP affecting the internal democracy within the party. 

“Kejriwal should shun all his campaigns and first attend the council meeting,” he said.  

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