Has Arvind Kejriwal become politically irrelevant?

Where is Arvind Kejriwal? What has happened to Arvind Kejriwal? Why the anti-corruption crusader is mum? Where is the fire and bravado that Kejriwal was known for? Is Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) a sinking ship? The above questions are very pertinent and the perception is that Kejriwal is running away from the battle.

The last six months have been very troublesome for the self appointed anti-corruption crusader. First the AAP lost Punjab elections to Congress’ Captain Amarinder Singh and they only bagged 20 seats out of 117 assembly seats in Punjab. There was a perception that Kejriwal might dump Delhi (Union Territory) and become CM Of a full state like Punjab and he never denied it and it played a huge role in AAP giving Punjab to Congress on a platter. The next jolt was Kejriwal’s blue eyed boy and water resources minister Kapil Mishra alleging Kejriwal took a bribe from another Delhi minister Satyender Jain of Rs 2 crore to settle some deals. There was no internal democracy and Kejriwal autocratically fired Mishra just before he had made serious allegation against the convenor of AAP. Kejriwal’s party had also blamed Electronic Voting Machines (EVM) for their debacle in Punjab and MCD polls of Delhi and said there was a vendetta to stop the march of AAP. Delhi Chief Minister has not said a word on many issues for the past two months and is behaving like a typical politician.

Arvind Kejriwal came on to the scene as an honest, hard working, man with integrity and high morality and won 28 seats in the 2013 Delhi assembly polls and formed the government with the support of Congress’ (ironical, isn’t it!) eight MLAs and his government lasted for 49 days amidst chaos and uncertainty. Kejriwal then plunged into general election and stood against Bharatiya Janata Party’s (BJP) Prime Ministerial nominee Narendra Modi from Varanasi and lost miserably. The IITian then realised his mistake and asked for forgiveness from the people of Delhi and then had an outstanding mandate of 67 seats (now 66 seats after losing Rajouri Garden by poll) in the 2015 assembly elections, but after two and a half years in the office, the power of chair has gone to Kejriwal’s head and people of Delhi are fed up with Kejriwal’s excuses and apologies and are now ruing that why did they vote for AAP in the first place.

Can you trust Kejriwal? This is the same guy, who had used old man and activist Anna Hazare to further his political ambitions by participating in India against Corruption movement (IAC) in 2011. The campaign connected with the masses and Kejriwal became overnight hero. Kejriwal had said that he will never enter politics and will work as a watchdog and moral authority against corruption. He also kicked out prominent leaders such as Prashant Bhushan, Yogendra Yadav from the party because they dared to speak against him and question his authority as a leader. His frequent jibes and digs at PM Modi and (in) famously calling him ‘psychopath’ and ‘coward’ for the CBI raids against his officer. The examples are endless and his favourite policy of shoot and scoot, by making wild allegations against opposition leaders without substantiating with solid evidence.

All is not lost for Delhi’s CM and he still has time to do course correction and follow his slogan of ‘5 saal Kejriwal’. Kejriwal wants to achieve everything without doing the hard yards and heavy lifting. Indian Republic needs a strong opposition and we cannot afford Kejriwal becoming Rahul Gandhi part two. Indian voter is very intelligent and Kejriwal has to behave and govern the people of Delhi that he had promised and taken oath. The course correction starts with debunking EVM fraud myth, stop blaming Modi for everything and look within to find answers. Kejriwal is still considered as a credible opposition face and if he wants to lead anti-BJP charge in 2019 then he better get his act together and focus on governance and nothing else.

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