JUST IN

For AAP, full statehood demand not LS plank alone

Delhi Chief Minister and AAP supremo Arvind Kejriwal, who leads the charge on the full statehood demand, cites examples of other international cities like London to buttress the point on how powerless the state government in Delhi is. PTI file photo

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) is weaving its Lok Sabha campaign around the demand for full statehood for Delhi but there is more to it than that meets the eye.

This campaign is not just for the May 12 polls alone but is also aimed at setting the tone for the Assembly elections early next year.

While it projects its work in the capital, the AAP has made a big pitch over the full statehood issue— its manifesto, which is themed after it, explains what the AAP would do if Delhi gets full statehood.

Earlier, both the BJP and the Congress had promised full statehood but when in government, that too decisive ones, they just ignored it, a senior AAP leader told DH.

"When the AAP came to power (in Delhi), the BJP-led Centre tried to squeeze us. This is a real issue," the leader said.

Delhi Chief Minister and AAP supremo Arvind Kejriwal, who leads the charge on the full statehood demand, cites examples of other international cities like London to buttress the point on how powerless the state government in Delhi is.

Kejriwal emphasises that he couldn't do much because his hands are tied and says that he can't even transfer a peon.

The BJP and the Congress seek to counter the AAP's narrative by saying that Kejriwal's party is trying to shift the blame of Delhi's woes.

"Delhi is suffering because of the negative mentality of its government and the chief minister in particular," Union Minister and senior Delhi BJP leader Harsh Vardhan, who is contesting from Chandni Chowk, was quoted by PTI as saying.

AAP campaign managers said that they will highlight how administration in Delhi was obstructed by the ministry of home affairs (MHA) and Lieutenant Governor (LG) of Delhi.

They would also tell people how Kejriwal and other ministers had to stage a dharna at the LG's house.

Another theme in the AAP's campaigning is of it becoming the BJP government's target, the party says that several cases were filed against its MLAs but many of them were rejected by the courts— while doing this, it will have to counter the BJP's allegations which terms it a confrontational party.

"We don't like to agitate but we are forced to do so because the BJP government has not done what it was supposed to do," the AAP leader said.

Its campaign also tries to project the Congress as a "distant third" party— it will have to explain as to why it wanted an alliance with the grand old party.

All AAP leader said that the Congress is an insignificant force and their fight is against the BJP— The party will have to reason out as to why it articulated that a triangular fight would only help the BJP, even though it believes that it is winning.

The AAP leader said that the party's work in sectors such as power, water, education and health will have a special resonance especially among lower and lower middle-class voters and this would help them romp home comfortably.

Narendra Modi or Rahul Gandhi? Who will win the battle royale of the Lok Sabha Elections 2019


Get real-time news updates, views and analysis on Lok Sabha Elections 2019 on Deccanherald.com/news/lok-sabha-elections-2019 


Like us on Facebook or follow us on Twitter and Instagram with #DHPoliticalTheatre for live updates on the Indian general elections 2019.

Comments (+)