AAP is a BAAP of Indian politics

AK’s AAP is ready to sail in the narrow vacuum between Congress’s corruption and BJP’s communalism, writes MUHAMMAD BURHANUDDIN QASMI.

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rvind Kejriwal (AK)’s move to resign as chief minister of Delhi on 14 February 2014 was a calculated and politically correct stroke. He is proving to be a mature player in the political arena and playing his game in his own orthodox style. He seems to be competent enough to think beyond others. His AAP (Aam Aadmi Party) can be a potential future BAAP (father) of some national political parties. It has found an attractive slogan — “Sheila Dixshit Hari Hain, Ab Modi Ki Bari Hain” in the run-up to the 2014 general election.

Being an impartial media person, you cannot ignore AK and his AAP. Their regular adventurism, or drama – as some prefer to name it – enthuse your consumers. It is affecting day-to-day political transaction of India. Some positive transformation in the present polity of this nation is inevitable.

For its part, the Indian National Congress committed a blunder by allowing AK’s AAP to form the government in Delhi. And now, freeing AK and company for a martyred national run, the Bharatya Janata Party (BJP) has virtually dug itself in with Modi’s drive to become Prime Minister. The AAP leadership is free to roam around beyond Delhi and NCR, with some governance credits in hand.

BJP could barricade AAP’s influence within capital, at least until Lok Sabha election, with minimum casualties in its bonus capitals. But now the AK spirit is out of the bottle and is bound to claim its share nationwide, which would hurt Modi the most.

Most voters are not fools anymore, thanks to this age of information explosion. The moment one compares AK’s governance, amidst this extraordinary hue and cry, with just common sense, the fact becomes obvious in his favour. He performed better than rationally expected in this short period of just 49 days. The last argument can be, his being a minority government, he tried best to deliver the promises it made. It’s conceivable by neutrals.

It’s evident now that a government can act swift and smooth without corruption or communalism. And that’s what whole India has been looking for. AK has inflamed some of the political fancies that a common youth nourishes inside. If you are in a classroom of a peer or teen group, you are bound to encounter some astonishing questions or arguments about AK and AAP’s activism. This simply indicates that AK could appeal even far beyond present voters.

The AAP just needs to remain as it is today – resolute, unbending and strict to the principles. A corruption-free nation must remain the sole agenda. AK must invest his special care over his nascent lieutenants. Yogendra Yadav, Manish Sisodia and Prashant Bhushan can be the horses for the long race. But Kumar Vishwas, Somnath Bharti and their likes may put him in deep water. Ashutosh Gupta, Shazia Ilmi and their likes are just in the ‘business’ and AAP is simply another opportune stage for them. AK needs to walk straight, to his aim, through all of them.

People such as Anna Hazare, Medha Patkar and former president APJ Abdul Kalam will always remain useful for this nation – AK needs to keep his door ever open to such souls. He himself needs to remain calm, composed and of course, shun un-parliamentary language. Delhi Lieutenant Governor, Najeeb Jung, has been simply fulfilling his constitutional duties, let’s say, to his comprehension, as head of the state. He or the elected President of India or, for that matter, our Supreme Court and High Court judges are on esteemed positions. They are considered reverent and you cannot disrespect these institutions for petty differences.

As a leader you ought to deliver, Mr. Kejriwal. But do it being within the accepted public standard. Functioning as an elected head of a government and agitating about governance are entirely two different waters. AAP is yet to conceive the former well.

There are millions more who just do not vote for one or the other political players in India. They, rather, watch the complete game, judge the players, from out of the ring and then put their hands together to clap – to push the EVM bottom in this case.

AK’s AAP is ready to sail in the gifted narrow vacuum between Congress’s corruption and BJP’s communalism. Its captain must remain ever-watchful of his small boat amidst the strong winds of BJP and Congress as well as of the danger during the journey ahead of the dark unknown nights – where some of his co- sailors may turn into monster sharks or killer storms for him and his new party.

Let’s hope for the best!
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The author M. Burhanuddin Qasmi is director of Mumbai based Markazul Ma’arif Education & Research Centre and editor of Eastern Crescent.