New Delhi: With the Aam Aadmi Party finishing a distant second in the municipal corporation polls, arrogance, ambition and abuse of power are touted to be the major reasons for the party’s downward spiral. It has become a perception among many party members that the top leadership is not easily accessible and the party has become like the traditional ones, despite their promise to be different.
Shazia Ilmi, who was the first to part ways with the AAP and join the BJP, had slammed the former saying that there is a lack of in-party democracy and organisational skills. “A voice of dissent and constructive criticism is not appreciated, which are the reasons why I left the party,” she said. She added that there were many in the party who felt the same and said that a “coterie is running the show and is preventing volunteers from participating in a more self expressed way or from taking their best decisions for the party, that kind of criticism was never allowed.”
Party’s founding members, Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan were thrown out of the party as they had raised their voice against the dubious selection process for the 2015 Assembly polls. One of the senior-most party members and its founder, Shanti Bhushan had slammed AAP’s chief Arvind Kejriwal for his dictatorial style of functioning. Post this, many party volunteers had quit and joined Swaraj India, the outfit floated by Mr Yadav and Mr Bhushan.
The party, which had emerged as the major political force in Delhi’s political scene, had also prey to abuse of power by “illegally” appointing 21 Parliamentary secretaries to work with the cabinet ministers and taking decisions without prior approval from the lieutenant governor, who is the administrator of Delhi. These “irregularities” have been pointed out in the former LG Najeeb Jung-appointed Shunglu panel report.
The opposition has slammed Mr Kejriwal for getting too ambitious after his party’s landslide win in the Delhi Assembly Elections. The AAP focusing on the governance in Delhi, shifted its focus on contesting elections in states such as Punjab and Goa, where it received drubbing recently. Poll analysts have predicted tough times ahead for the party, which also plans to contest Assembly elections in Gujarat this year after its humiliating loss in MCD polls.