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Monday, January 6, 2014

Aam is khaas - the rise of the AAP


When , on  a bright, sunny, winter afternoon of  28th December, 2013, a bespectacled, diminutive man , clad in a nondescript grey pullover and navy blue muffler , took the oath of office as chief minister to the state which is the capital city of the world’s largest democracy, it was indeed a special moment. It was a moment that brought a lump to the throat of every ‘aam aadmi’ , a moment that many  had been hoping  and praying for ,but had all but given up hopes of ever seeing – the rise and rise of a party not built on the lure of a dynasty, not luring voters on caste and religion- a party promising to restore the lost moral fibre of Indian polity, a party for the people and by the people. Yes, AAP is the khaas  flavor of the season .

AAP rose from the simmering discontent of a movement  which  had been sparked off  by an astute  Gandhian. The genesis of the Anna Hazare movement lay in the ruins of  the Congress led government, in the rampant in your face corruption pervading the corridors of power, in the ‘I scratch your back and you scratch mine’ ethos pervading Indian polity, bureaucracy and society. The founder member of AAP ,  Arvind  Kejriwal,  ex IITian, ex Magsaysay award recipient, placed before the people of Delhi a new model of governance  in which R.K Laxman’s common man would be both   the ruler and the ruled. The rise of the new party lies in the fact that its leaders are not closeted in their own ivory towers, separated from the junta by red beacon flashing cars and brawny security guards. Instead the leaders are the junta and the junta is the leader.

 AAP  has   made huge personal assets passé. They have  made  traveling by public transport , wearing a white topi, and  mingling with the aam aadmi look  chic . It believes that rulers  should have no need for wealth or other external rewards , it pledges to  ensure that no one from its ranks  will have any wrong motive for seeking a position of leadership, and those who are chosen to govern will govern solely from a concern to seek the welfare of the people. It has brought about a political  revolution by showing that  rulers and leaders   need to act without expectation and to serve without conditions.

 Yes, I acknowledge that no system is foolproof and no party is perfect. The fledgeling AAP will also make its share of blunders and will give enough  cause for its supporters to blush . The difference is that this newbie party will be the proverbial phoenix rising from the ashes because , even though it may be on the seat of power, it is not after power. The party is governed only by the ambition of weeding out corruption and providing probity in public life.

 To conclude:  just as the first showers bring succour to a  rain  starved land, so has the AAP   brought  a sense of  purpose to  the steps of the people. The  message it has given out is  the same as the one used by the legendary Jai Prakash Narain on an  eventful day in Patna’s  Ramlila Maidan in the  draconian seventies of the original  Mrs G…
              “ Singhasan khali karo ki junta aati hai ”


  1. Yes!
    And there is lots of hope from them!

    1. Yes, Indrani- and I hope they fulfill their promises!