After a string of defeats, Kejriwal battles infighting

RSTV Bureau
FIle photo of AAP National Convener & Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal at party meet.  Photo - PTI

FIle photo of AAP National Convener & Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal at party meet.
Photo – PTI

After a setback in Delhi municipal polls, Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) is grappling with speculations of internal strife. In a bid to put them off, Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal sought to quell speculation of a rift between him and Kumar Vishwas, the poet-politician and his long-time colleague since the days of Anna Hazare agitation in 2011.

The speculations were rife about a section of party pitching reassessment of Kumar Vishwas’s profile in the party, who has for sometime lying in the fringes, even not seen campaigning for the party.

In an interview last week, the popular kavi also differed with Kejriwal over the issue of EVMs. The Delhi CM has alleged tampering in the EVMs as the reason behind the AAP’s recent poll defeats.

“कुमार मेरा छोटा भाई है। कुछ लोग हमारे बीच दरार दिखा रहे हैं, ऐसे लोग पार्टी के दुश्मन हैं ! वो बाज़ आयें। हमें कोई अलग नहीं कर सकता, (Kumar is my younger brother. Some people are trying to create a rift between us. Such people are enemies of the party. They better mend their ways. No one can separate us),” Kejriwal tweeted on Sunday.

The AAP chief also warned party leaders after his party’s Okhla MLA Amanatullah Khan alleged that Vishwas was trying to “usurp” the AAP and that he harbours ambitions of leading the party.

“Kumar Vishwas is trying to usurp the AAP and break the AAP. He is calling MLAs to his residence and saying that he should be made the party convener…,” Khan alleged.

On Friday, contrary to the party line that EVM rigging was behind AAP’s loss in the Punjab Assembly and MCD polls, Vishwas had pointed to reasons other than alleged tampering of electronic voting machines and said there is a communication gap between the top brass and volunteers.

The AAP bagged only 20 seats in the Punjab polls, much below its expectations, and suffered a humiliating in the MCD polls, its home turf.

Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia and Labour Minister Gopal Rai too alleged rigging of EVMs was to blame for the party’s poor electoral show in Punjab and Delhi.

(With inputs from Agencies)