ISSN (Print) - 0012-9976 | ISSN (Online) - 2349-8846

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Where Does the Aam Aadmi Party Stand?

The Aam Aadmi Party shares a few similarities with the Janata Party of 1977, but is also different from it in many ways. While it could make sure of not repeating the mistakes of 1979, it would also do well to make it clear where it stands on many important issues.

The most striking feature of the poll scene, as it is now, is the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP). Its emergence has a lot in common with the Janata Party’s arrival in 1977. There are differences too. Unlike on 30 January 1977, the day when a cross-section of leaders with their own baggage rallied behind Jaya­prakash Narayan (JP) to announce the formation of the Janata Party and put up candidates against Indira Gandhi’s Congress for the general election scheduled just a month from then, the AAP has been in existence for more than a year and its leaders are not shy of pleading guilty when charged with being anarchists. JP, on the contrary, was a reluctant entrant to the field of electoral politics, and did so only to counter such a notion about him.

This distinction apart, the AAP has a lot in common with the Janata experiment, and it is important that its leaders ponder this seriously and commit themselves to making the necessary course corrections. In other words, they owe it to the people of this country to learn from the Janata experiment and commit themselves to not repeating its mistakes. One of such commonalities is Kumar Vishwas; one cannot but see him as another Raj Narain in the making. Apart from that he carries baggage (including praising Narendra Modi), his decision to take on Rahul Gandhi is strikingly similar to Narain taking a vow to remain unshaven until he defeated Indira Gandhi in her constituency; somewhat drawn from Draupadi’s vow in the Mahabharata.

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