As I had said in a blogpost before Delhi polls, I intended to and did vote for AAP candidate from our area.
A decision I regret now.
And this isn’t due to AAP candidate from our area disappointing us. Because frankly speaking, he hasn’t been in power long enough for me to be able to judge him on his performance.
This feeling is instead coming due to some of the decisions and acts of AAP in the past few days, which have made me, introspect deeply on this matter, and reach this conclusion.
Here is why:
Subsidized water and electricity: While everyone loves freebies, at the end of the day, when state decides to give something away for free, it gets the money to finance those freebies, by taxing us directly or indirectly. Furthermore, I believe quality and availability of water and electricity is a bigger issue than their tariffs. Of course it might be different for you, but for me, savings I would made by not having to buy packaged water (DJB water supply in our area is unsuitable for human consumption) and spending thousands each year on inverter, batteries, stabilizers etc. would be more than what I would get by way of these subsidies, which will be ultimately financed by us.
Rewarding Auto Rickshaw Drivers for their support: AAP Government in Delhi has made public their plan to take away the right of traffic police to fine those auto rickshaw drivers, who overcharge, are only interested in plying on a certain route and do not wear uniform, they are required by law to wear. AAP Government wants to transfer this power back to Transport Department, which does not have the manpower to do this and had in fact transferred this power to traffic police, after a court order!
This to me is a clear case of appeasing a certain section, which gave political support to the government and it comes at the expense of common man and rule of law.
Rewarding traders and local businesses for their support: AAP’s decision to roll back FDI in Retail is regressive and not only comes at the expense of consumers, but also that of India’s economic wellbeing. That too at a time when investor confidence in India is low, our growth is slowing and we badly need foreign capital to finance our trade deficit and international loans.
There will be those who will say that FDI is bad for India and will ultimately lead to money being syphoned out of India, well that will happen regardless of whether we get FDI or not. Because we import more things than we export and with little to no emphasis on R&D in India, it is unlikely things will change anytime soon.
So rather than taking this regressive step, AAP should have teamed up with IIT Delhi and other such institutions and financed research into next generation of technology. So that 10 years down the line, India would have something unique to sell to the world. That would have not only given a boost to domestic industry in the long run, but it would have also strengthened India’s position and made Delhi an attractive destination for companies (Indian as well as International) and talent.
Expecting cops to act on the whims and fancies of politicians: While I appreciate the fact that AAP ministers are listening to people’s complaints and are trying to end illegal activities taking place in Delhi. However what I do not appreciate is that they wanted police to conduct raids and arrests, without court warrant.
We already have instances of politicians using the police to settle scores, last thing we need is justification coming for such moves by seemingly honest people and such moves actually getting support from public at large. Because even though yesterday an honest politician might have been attempting to bust a drug and prostitution racket, but tomorrow a corrupt politician could use the same precedence to levy false accusations against you and your loved ones. And order raid at your home at night, and get you and ladies of your house picked up, without any court warrant!
Which is why this move has to be condemned by all sections of the society and all attempts ought to be made to ensure there is no political interference in police matters, be it for good or bad. Otherwise, police in India will just remain a tool in the hands of politicians, which they can use at their discretion.
Which is why, I, a common man with no political affiliation and someone whose destiny is forever intertwined with that of India (by choice), regret voting for AAP at the moment. Though a faint glimmer of hope still exists in my heart, hoping for AAP to make a turnaround and stop behaving like other political parties in India (something they promised initially) and put their heads down and get to the unglamorous work of simplifying government procedures and reducing red-tapism and government interference in everyday life of the common man.
I think its too early to predict anything…They have huge expectation from entire India…there were 4 more states which got new govt.but now body is questioning them…6 months is a good time to evaluate there progress..They are making decision to relief lower level class.
Ajay, I am not predicting anything. I am just expressing my regret, based on what AAP has done, since it came to power in Delhi.
As a voter and resident of Delhi, it is my right to question my government and express disappointment, if they perform in manner, I feel is counterproductive.
100% agree with you.
Thank you D P Singh.
Yogesh, Ravin here (wicked 😉 ) If you remember, I posted a comment in your original post citing the same concerns, and glad better late than never, the realization dawned on you!
Vote sensibly buddy next time! All the best!
Give them some time. You know most of the member of AAP Govt. are totally new to the system. Good thing is they have a vision and want to do something positive, but it seems they don’t know the proper way to execute them.
Till now, Political parties ruling over us were having experience of more than 100 years.. these people don’t even have worked for 100 days.
So, I suggest, before making your mind,, give them some more time.
Varun, problem with AAP is the decisions they have taken (FDI rollback, subsidies and rewarding TSR drivers) have a far reaching and long term consequences. And these steps haven’t come due to lack of experience, but rather as part of a policy of appeasement of certain vote banks.
And that in my view is inexcusable and unacceptable.
Also a lawyer not knowing that it is illegal for police to arrest women after 6pm and raid places without court warrant is something I just cannot believe. And knowing this and still trying to force police to act in an illegal manner, by utilizing his position as law minister and pressure of media and mob is completely unacceptable. What is even more unacceptable is the justification Delhi CM came out with yesterday and simply refused to listen to police’s version by saying, “why would my law minister lie? He doesn’t have any personal enmity with the SHOs in question.”
Time is all they need… People have hope in them soon better will occur
I agree with varun and ajay. Before making our mind, we must give them a fair chance. They are at too early stage to be judged. They have done a tremendous job of diving into politics and taking an initiative to work for welfare of people. As we know most of us do not have courage to leave our jobs and work for country/people, we should atleast support them who has such dedications. They should get chance for atleast 6months – 1 year before we start judging them, so till then we should believe in them and support them.
I do agree that due to there inexperience in politics they are have taking some decisions in hurry, i think slowly they will learn to act wisely.
Vishal, if they damage the economy and wellbeing of people in the learning process, then it isn’t good for the people or the country. Best way to learn something new is to keep your mouth shut, analyze what is going on, think what can be done, explore other possibilities and only then act.
No one is going to criticize AAP for acting slowly, but they will and should be criticized for acting wrongly.
@yogesh sarkar : Who says no body will criticise AAP for acting slowly . i have seen critics want to mend everything in a day. Havent you seen bjp goons nagging like hell on even small small issues (they are not meeting our expectation,how they are different from others,they are damn slow,they know shit about governance and what not!!).BJP should be giving constructive support to AAP as they promised earlier . but…God help them!!.
I don’t think AAP’s economic move of electricity and water is gonna be disastrous for economy or so .we have 50 percent subsidy on LPG too fr 30 40 years. Did any one say anything about this??and 40 crore is not a huge amount .if we can spend 2500 crores on a statue and PR agency we can spend this much to give quick relief to poors. so i think we can give subsidies on essential commodities at least.
One last thing :
Even if their economic policies will boomerang (as few are claiming).how will it make a difference ..you have already got your money through subsidies..why so reluctant to pay it back.?
So what you are essentially saying is, since they are acting like other parties, we cannot blame them. Ok, fair enough.
Silly me for thinking they are different and thus choosing them over others.
Exactly the things I have been thinking in the last week or so, even though I did not vote for AAP.
And yes, I too have that same ‘glimmer of hope’ and really wish they turn around and start doing what they promised.
The Midnight Drama
Bravo , Somnath Bharati
Bravo for that brush with the Delhi Police at midnight , yesterday
You managed to conclusively establish , what people of Delhi suspected all along , viz :,
> If Delhi Police cannot care a hoot , even for a Minister , the poor stand no
chance to get them to act on their complaints
> Delhi Police are hand-in-glove with the drug mafia / pimps / rapists /
swindlers / murderers / smugglers / all anti-social elements
> Delhi Police are the most corrupt department
DEAR SOMNATH ,
Next time you conduct such a ” surprise raid ” ,
> do it in daytime
> under the glare of 100 TV cameras
> in the presence of the people of Delhi
> telecast LIVE on news channels
TV editors will be too glad to oblige !
That is the only way to expose Police-Mafia nexus !
Forget the proper procedures – which only succeed in alerting the Mafia !
But don’t expect things to change much till AAP manages to get FULL STATEHOOD status for Delhi , and make the Police report to the Delhi government , instead of the Central Home Minister
Of course , the Centre will do everything to prevent this !
In the meantime , a word of caution to the Delhi Police :
> Somnath is only a symbol of people’s anger / frustration
> If you don’t mend your ways fast , this anger will boil over
> At that time , your lathis / tear gas / water cannons will not be able to
control the people
> People have witnessed what happened in Arab countries recently
> They are desperate to try anything that they think , will get them justice
> Do not stretch your luck
> Next time you fail to act on their complaints – or a complaint of any
Minister of Delhi government , you will run out of luck !
> With 2014 elections approaching fast , Congress Home Minister will not
come to your aid – for fear of an ” ANTI – CONGRESS ” wave over ”
POLICE BRUTALITY ” !
Remember , Ram Lila Maidan in 2011 ?
* hemen parekh ( 17 Jan 2014 / Mumbai )
Hemen, he did take media and his supporters with him, to pressurize police. And that is where I feel, he did wrong.
If you justify such behavior today, then remember, if tomorrow a politician falsely accuses you of something, orders police to conduct an illegal raid on your own home, then it too would be justified. After all, if the accusations are false, you will come out unscathed from the court, right?
Laws and procedures are made so that abusers have to work hard to abuse them, and innocent and less powerful at least have some chance to defend themselves against the high and mighty, who feel police and government officials must do whatever they say, good, bad or illegal!
I see a lot of people in support of AAP too. As my point of view
1. People here saying to give chance to AAP, even though we know that they are taking wrong decisions(they are numerous) they want to support. For me you have already provided them the support for the term period, but atleast dont support them to make wrong decisions for the sake of the economy.
2. The question of being new to the system. The AAP already knew they were new to this, so instead of sitting in oposition and learning(not literally but observing) as how things are working and what benefits they could provide at a latter stage, they took the decision of going ahead. Now it was their own decision so they should justify each of there act in this regard.
3. Free water and electricity. Let me bring to notice that as per some rules in group housing societies, as water is supplied through bulk meter(not per flat system but as a group on whole) this facility is not provided. So double burden for them (inc in tax and no subsidy in return). Please also note that these are the middle income group people who were also expecting the benefits.
I am not saying that AAP is a bad choice or good one for the voters, but just want to let them know what there choice has led us too. I also voted for AAP, but never thought of these situations. They may make some good choices in future but what about he wrong one, you may not be the sufferer but many more are. Think about it
Very well put Akshay. I too am surprised by blind faith of some, who are trying to justify the wrong acts, one way or the other.
There is no right to recall in India (thank god, otherwise elections would never end), so they are going to stay in the power, till Congress pulls the support out.
Congress is never gonna pull out the support. They have great people in congress who can mould the minds of well known(for instance Mr. Manmohan). Alliance is only formed when both the parties mutually agree on some points. And we all here know as Mr. Kejriwal said that they were never against Congress(The ones who caused suffering) but against BJP (who were out to save us from the suffereing). This already shows that whose intentions were behind it and what exactly to expect.
YS, I completely agree with your views, moreover I fail to understand that why they are targeting Lok Sabha elections instead of doing reforms in Delhi. Ideally, at the first place, they should prove themselves by giving good governance in Delhi.
They have lost there concentration now and I have a serious doubt on their intentions.
Gaurav Pal Singh
Gaurav, that is for them to decide what is and isn’t important. They are a political party and will take decisions based on what is and isn’t best for their party, based on what they feel. We can only question the action of the government and representatives we voted for.
@ yogesh sarkar please enlighten us with the options, which party should we support
Satish, neither am I political pundit, nor am I intellectually capable of guiding others and their vote.
I am just a common man, who can only express his anguish, displeasure and disappointment, in the best way he can.
Hi Yogesh, Good post. While I echo your views on AAP, I am a little surprised too. Free electricity & water and opposition to FDI were an integral part of their manifesto right from the time of their inception which you would’ve known at the time of voting itself. Then why would you be disappointed at their decisions?
I personally feel that AAP is a brilliant marketer, not so good at execution. Also, what appalls me the most is their choice of members. Taking in convicted criminals like Binayak Sen, open Maoist/Naxal supporters, supporters of terrorists like Ajmal & Afzal etc is simply not becoming of a mainstream party.
Priya, frankly and honestly speaking, I never read their manifesto. I have never read party manifestos and I doubt I will ever do that.
Yes I did think of them as socialists, but then again, there is no left, right and center in India, just left i.e. every party is socialist. However I didn’t expect them to drop FDI in Retail like this, though I was expecting subsidy on water and electricity, and even though I didn’t welcome it, it seemed like a small price to pay for a seemingly honest and well intentioned party.
We had the patience to bear corruption and arrogance of politicians for years together but when someone truly stood up on our behalf why are we being so skeptical of every single move. Have we ever made the cong or the BJP walk on a tight rope like this ever? Then why now? I’m not convinced about some decisions of AAP too but I would give them time. They are learning. I can bear with the sometime awkward style of AAP for their good intentions. For once we have people with noble intentions running a govt. so support them through thick and thin. The cong and BJP are waiting exactly for this to happen; use common man’s impatients and cynical attitude to weigh down AAP. Let’s not fall for the trap. At least people like us who get to voice our opinion on social media and other forums. Least we can do is give good period of time for AAP to prove themselves. Even in the worst case scenario we would not lose much as we have had the worst governance for the past few years.
As for the water and electricity reforms are concerned AAP has done the right thing. Water is a natural resource we deserve to use it for free but misuse is the major problem and the law is clear that anyone using over 600kl will have to pay hiked charges for complete usage and no subsidy will be provided. So people will be rewarded for judicious use of water. Also, Kejriwal has clearly stated that once corrupted meters are taken care of the prices would come Down and there would be no need for heavy subsidies. He’s solving the root cause! Corruption and monopoly of the meter manufacturer. FDI in retail is a short term gain. It will discourage manufacturing sector and more importantly create psuedojobs. Retail chains are huge failure in our country. We like our Kiranas and the retail giants can never compete with them however big and attractive they are. Business cannot swim against a cultural tide. Business is all about credibility and the credibility built up by Kiranas are that of several decades.
So my sincere request is please do not judge now. It’s too early. Give them time. Agree or not they symbolize honesty in governance. Even if we don’t agree with their style or even decisions, we need to support them. Give them the luxury to make mistakes and more importantly time. This will be a symbolic act from our side (public in general). One that send the message to the political class that honesty and transperancy is the way forward. Look back at history, symbolism is one of the keys to bring about change.
Give him time for what?
To disrespect the sacrifices of our forefathers and present a perfect situation for terrorists to exploit by disrupting Republic Day Parade?
Well said dinesh !!
I hope every one who voted for AAP regrets. Arguments like (a) it is too early to judge (b) if we tolereated corruption of Congress for decades, why not give AAP more time are not acceptable. If we know AAP is promoting anarchy, it is better to nip the problem in bud. Also the fact we tolerated somebody’s corruption for decades does not mean we close our eyes to the arrogance of AAP. Especially after the dharna of last 2 days, I feel it is time AAP goes.
Can you explain to me from any viewpoint why the entry of Walmart into India is a good thing? Seriously, every “conservative” in India hails foreign capital like it’s the bees’ knees. What exactly is so great about it from the economic and social development viewpoints?
1. More choices for me as a consumer.
2. FDI inflow at a time when our trade deficit is getting larger by the day and we need US$ to pay for fuel, other items and service our debts.
3. Betting paying employment opportunity for those working in retail sector, in comparison to what they get at a local shop.
4. Renewed interest in real estate sector, at a time when it needs it the most.