Monday, December 09, 2013

Arvind Kejriwal's interview on NDTV after Delhi election

Saw an interview of Arvind Kejriwal on NDTV today (video). Boy! He's fantastic. I hadn't heard him or listen to anyone from AAP in real life. So far atleast, AAP is primarily a Delhi Party with little or no impact on a place like Bangalore. My initial impression was to think of it as an Indian Tea Party with a strong grassroots message but no real electoral plan. After this election in 2013, I'm not so sure about that. They seem to have a plan.

His message is really powerful and it touches a raw nerve. Anyone who has had to pay a bribe or massage some "official's" ego will connect with the message. I can recall several instances where I have either being made to pay a bribe or paid one inadvertently like the time when the lady at the RTO cash counter didn't give me Rs.4/- in change. The funny thing is that I realized why all government services have weird fees like 274/- or 38/- or 136/-. That's because they pocket the change and none's the wiser. A subtle form of corruption. BTW, if you have paid a bribe then report it at

Google Trends show the picture - searches about Arvind Kejriwal since 2011 has been amazing

When Barkha Dutt asked him if he would take Congress's support to form a government, his answer was a classic. His point was that in actuality Congress and BJP are the same and they should ally with each other. Wow! What a retort! Here I am gushing like a giddy schoolgirl, but end of the day one really respects what he has done and the goal he has set for everyone else.

Some of his points that I really liked were

  1. Congress and BJP are the same. They should ally with each other because their approach is the same. His stance is simple - anti-corruption and that's not a cliche.
  2. His example of how a father pleaded with him not to give ticket for his young son because he was afraid of the consequences. AK's point was that politics has now reached the stage where the average man doesn't want to be involved and he wants to change that.
  3. How people have given up their time, their careers to volunteer for the AAP. There was even one person from my office who took a sabbatical to campaign for AAP. Now I know why. 
But in the end, I think Sheila Dixit did the best she could. Its not easy to govern a state for 3 consecutive terms and one must give credit where credit is due. There is no doubt in my mind that this isn't a verdict against her governance but the an indication of the mood of the times. This is my first every post on politics but its taken a simple interview of an extraordinary man to drive the point.
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