Ke­jri­wal may shift to Pun­jab from Delhi

The Sunday Guardian - - Front Page - PANKAJ VOHRA NEW DELHI

In a move fraught with far reach­ing ram­i­fi­ca­tions for the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), Delhi Chief Min­is­ter Arvind Ke­jri­wal is be­ing pres­surised by some of his sup­port­ers to shift to Pun­jab if the AAP se­cures a clean ma­jor­ity in the Assem­bly elec­tions next year. Ke­jri­wal has in­di­cated to those close to him that he would not be averse to the idea, but would take the fi­nal de­ci­sion af­ter the elec­tion re­sults. The AAP is clearly emerg­ing as the main chal­lenger to Pun­jab’s Shi­ro­mani Akali DalBharatiya Janata Party gov­ern­ment, which has been in power for the past nine and a half years and is there­fore fac­ing a strong anti in­cum­bency fac­tor.

Sources said that the is­sue of Ke­jri­wal go­ing to Pun­jab has been dis­cussed at the high­est level in the party and con­tin­ues to be a mat­ter of great con­cern, since it would en­tail mak­ing sub­stan­tial changes in the present set up. Ke­jri­wal’s will­ing­ness also im­plies that in the event he takes the plunge in Pun­jab, post elec­tion, his deputy Man­ish Siso­dia would au­to­mat­i­cally be his suc­ces­sor. In any case, Siso­dia has vir­tu­ally been func­tion­ing as the Chief Min­is­ter, pro­vid­ing am­ple time to Ke­jri­wal to fo­cus on the po­lit­i­cal sce­nario and in­stead con­cen­trate on ex­pand­ing the or­gan­i­sa­tional net­work in other states.

The party is do­ing ex­tremely well in Goa and as a con­se­quence could pose prob­lems for both the BJP and the Congress next year. Sim­i­larly, in Gu­jarat, the AAP has made deep in­roads and the BJP’s pri­mary ap­pre­hen­sion is to pre­vent any kind of a tie up be­tween the AAP and Hardik Pa­tel, who has a sub­stan­tial fol­low­ing amongst the youth in gen­eral and the Pati­dar com­mu­nity in par­tic­u­lar.

Ac­cord­ing to sources, Ke­jri­wal has done con­sid­er­able home­work so far as Pun­jab is con­cerned and is fairly con­fi­dent that his party would secure not less than 70 seats in the 117-mem­ber Assem­bly. He has been reg­u­larly meet­ing the com­mon peo­ple in the state and has been re­peat­edly re­minded that he should un­der no cir­cum­stances ac­cept tra­di­tional politi­cians in the AAP’s fold if he hopes to win the elec­tions. He has also stud­ied in de­tail the con­tro­ver­sial Anand­pur Sa­heb res­o­lu­tion and the con­tentious is­sue of the Sut­lej Ya­muna Link Canal. He has also fa­mil­iarised him­self with the pos­si­ble

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from India

© PressReader. All rights reserved.