Arvind Kejriwal’s Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) has won a landslide victory in Delhi’s state elections capturing 67 seats. Thus the BJP and the Congress both were routed from the capital assembly. This victory is startling because only two years ago AAP, which had only then appeared on the political horizon had won 28 of the 70 seats. This forced the AAP to make a coalition government. Within a few weeks of forming the government, Kejriwal had to resign because of his party’s failure to pass an anti-graft law, which other parties believed was likely to target their own members.

The decision to resign was greatly criticized and Kejriwal was thought to lack political maturity and his party was believed to be doomed. But Kejriwal stoutly defended his decision, as it was based on principles which AAP could not compromise. The present sweep, by this party shows, that it persevered in supporting the aspirations of the poor classes, especially the urban poor and stood by their demands like reducing their power bills, offering them free water and enforcing discipline and restraint on Delhi Police.

Now the main question is will the ‘Common Man’s Party’ inspire the rest of India as it has done Delhi? The main issues, on which this election was contested were corruption, water supply, energy, law and order etc. The seriousness with which Kejriwal, in his earlier tenure had focused on these problems, had created a trust in the electorate about the ability of his Party to resolve these issues.  One could only wish that our politicians too had been forged into tempered steel, had earned their present positions by serving the people and had seen and undergone the rigours of life, like a common man, to understand the misery and hardship of the poor masses. Unless the political leadership emerges from the bearing of an ‘Aam Aadmi’ no real and far-reaching change can be brought about.

ZAFAR AZIZ CHAUDHRY,

Lahore, February 13.