Volunteers accused state party chief Mayank Gandhi of threatening and ill-treating them

Mumbai : About 200 members of the Aam Aadmi Party’s Mumbai unit discarded the party’s trademark ‘topis’ on Saturday, thereby relinquishing their membership. They expressed discontentment over the direction the nascent political outfit is taking and its decision to not contest the forthcoming state elections.

The volunteers, who gathered at the Marathi Patrakar Sangh on Saturday afternoon, said that they have submitted a letter of resignation to the party chief Arvind Kejriwal expressing their decision to not continue with party work.

Addressing mediapersons, the party volunteers leveled allegations against the party’s top leadership and accused the state party chief, Mayank Gandhi, of threatening and ill-treating them when they met him to raise various issues on August 9.

The volunteers gathered even went so far as to accuse the party of having allied with communal forces and even alleged that the party’s ulterior motive for contesting in the Delhi Lok Sabha elections was to help the BJP, although they denied having any proof to support the allegations.

“We have taken this decision because volunteers are not allowed to work freely inside the party and the top leadership has little or no concern for the well being of its volunteers”, informed Afroz Malik, a party volunteer after submitting his resignation.

Hitting out against them, a senior AAP leader explained “there are some known troublemakers with some kind of agenda. They have always been trying to foment trouble. Yesterday we made all efforts to reconcile this group but they have been confrontational”. The leader further said “one of their leaders Afroz Malik has been trying to create divides within the party for some time now”.

The resigned volunteers said that they will not contest elections but will return to the work they were doing before aligning themselves with the party.