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Issue No.: 573 | March 2015

The Spectacular Victory of AAP

Vappala Balachandran
The highly discerning public of Delhi who voted for the BJP as a viable alternative soon found that not a single measure was taken by the Modi government to ameliorate their miserable daily lives despite the NDA’s high decibel election promises. In India an average voter demands only a few basic things: travel to one’s workplace without molestation, some amount of certainty about their electric power and water supply, basic education facilities, reasonably clean public toilet facilities and above all a certain amount of security provided by the police who they expect would be less authoritarian. 

Instead what they experienced was more bureaucracy, less transparency, more religious strife which endangered daily law and order, high drama of glittering inaugurations, orchestrated cleanliness drives which meant nothing more than photo opportunities and frequent visits by foreign VIPs which inconvenienced their daily lives. Delhi was "locked down” for President Obama’s visit for several days including for the rehearsal of Republic Day parade. For foreign VIPs this was a pleasure trip while for the common man it was further difficulties in their daily trudging to the places of work, school or markets. 

The spectacular victory of Arvind Kejriwal and his Aam Admi Party is thus an expression of this common man’s frustration and a signal to the NDA government that they would not be satisfied with drama, slogans and promises. It is not yet certain whether this middle class movement will be sustained for the next 5 years or whether they will lose steam like the youthful European "Greens” who had burst dramatically into the European politics in the 1980s as a "Third Force” but had lost steam by 2013 in Germany and France.

Vappala Balachandran, Mumbai, 

Excerpted from his article Significance of the Spectacular "Aam Aadmi” Victory in the online Daily The Citizen, February 10, 2015  





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