Monday, March 23, 2015

Silence In Arvind Aaam Admi Party

Arvind Kejriwal’s Aam Aadmi Party govt in Delhi hikes water tariff by 10 pct-First Post-20.03.15

The Arvind Kejriwal led Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) government in Delhi hiked the water tariff by 10 per cent about a month after it announced a free-water scheme for people in the national capital.
Delhi Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisoida, who chaired the 121st Board Meeting of Delhi Jal Board, gave his nod to the proposal for the tariff hike with immediate effect even as Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) and Congress slammed the government’s decision, saying it was a “betrayal of the people”.
According to a senior government official, the increase in tariff will be effective for households which consume more than 20,000 litres of water per month. However, people consuming under 20,000 litres will not be affected by the hike.
It was also decided to regularise all unauthorised water connections by taking a fee of Rs 3,310, which was earlier Rs 20,000, with the step aimed at encouraging consumers to go for authorised connections. “This will help DJB enforce better water accounting as well as reduce non-revenue water,” said a senior government official.
Arvind Kejriwal wants ACs in his new house removed, PWD says don’t use them-Indian

Arvind Kejriwal’s AAP govt faces its first protest in Delhi -Financial Express

Angry over the government’s order to make installation of GPS device mandatory for all taxis, the unions of yellow and black cabs in the city will take out a march from Rajghat to Delhi Assembly on March 25 to protest against the ‘Tuglaki Farman’, a day when a two-day special session will be going on.

Taxis from all railway stations and airport will also participate in the protest-rally against the Arvind Kejriwal-led Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Delhi Government.
In order to ensure women safety, government recently ordered all taxi operators to install GPS in their vehicles, failing which fitness certificate will not be issued to them.

The government’s decision will be enforced on all types of taxis, including Radio taxis and black-and-yellow cabs, plying in different parts of the national capital.

“We will not accept this government’s order at any cost as it is just like ‘Tuglaki Farman’. We are being harassed, looted in the name of GPS. We have decided to carry out protest-rally with black flags from Rajghat to Delhi Assembly at 10 AM on March 25,” Rajendra Soni, general secretary of Delhi Pradesh Taxis’ Union, said.

Soni said in the protest march, all city’s yellow and black taxis from all railway stations- Anand Vihar, New Delhi, Old Delhi, Nizammudin, Paharganj and taxi unions of IGI Airport will also be participating.

At present, there are around 15,000 yellow and black cabs plying across the national capital.
“During protest march, taxi drivers will also install black flags on their vehicles. After the rally at Delhi Assembly where special session will be going on, we will demand from all government to immediately withdraw this order,” he also said.
Silence of Kejriwal and Yadav-Bhushan camp: Is AAP 'reconciliation' just a hogwash?-First Post
“Yeh toofan se pahle ki khamoshi hai (The silence is indicative of the coming storm).” This is how a credible source in the Aam Aadmi Party describes the silence maintained by two warring party factions – one led by Prashant Bhushan and Yogendra Yadav and the other by Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal. They believe that the ongoing ‘reconciliation’ attempts between the two camps are in fact a “tactical and politically calculated move”.

“The party’s major decision of expanding organisational footprint across the country is tactical and politically calculated. Most of the members of the 350-member national council are from different states. They will have an influence and political identity in their areas if the party goes national. By meeting their long-standing demand of taking part in the electoral process of different states, Kejriwalji has tried to win their support. The move will him convince them to vote in favour of the proposal moved by the Kejriwal group,” he told Firstpost.

The earlier statement by Kejriwal that the party had no plans to spread its wings and that he would focus on Delhi only was “nothing but a drama”. “Soon after the stunning victory in the Delhi elections, it was decided that the party try to fate will be tried in other states too. But Kejriwalji wants this to happen only in his leadership, not under Yogendra Yadav sir or Prashant Bhushan sir,” he added. 

Another party insider also corroborated his statements adding that strong lobbying is going on by the two sides. “Both Yogendraji and Arvindji have set up dedicated teams who are contacting members of the National Council and convincing them to vote in their favour,” he said.

Predicting that the crucial meeting of the AAP’s apex strategy-making body will take two days to conclude, he said, “Different issues will be discussed in the meeting and it will be difficult to reach a conclusion in one day. It will be extended the next day as well. In this case, a large number of the participants will leave without voting, which will ultimately go in favour of Arvindji.”

He further added that it would be an extended National Council. Those who are not part of it will also attend the proceedings but they won’t be able to vote. The convener can call extended PAC, National Executive or the National Council. “The additional presence of leaders belonging to Arvind’s may move a motion that the members accept the earlier NE decision of not changing the convener and oust dissident leaders either from the party or decision-making bodies,” he anticipated.
If the National Council agrees to accept the NE’s decision, the removal of Bhushan and Yadav is certain. “Not only the duo, others are also on hit list. The will also be removed but not now,” said this leader close to the Kejriwal camp.

“You must not forget that the entire Delhi poll was fought on Kejriwal’s name. And he deserves to be credited for the thumping victory. AAP and Kejriwal are synonyms. Why should he be dictated terms?” he said advocating the chief minister should continue to be the party’s convener.
When asked about the complete silence from both sides, “Series of leaks of letters and internal e-mails and sting operations have already caused dents in the image of all these top leaders. They are intentionally avoiding making statements to undo the damage to the party’s image,” he said.
Meanwhile, the minutes of the PAC meeting held at Kejriwal’s residence at Kaushambi has been made public. The party has put it on its website.

 In a letter addressed Kejriwal and party’s Delhi unit, Bhushan and Yadav had raised the demand of making the minutes public.
Accepting Yadav’s another demand, the PAC took the decision that the triumvirate of organisational strength, strength of local leadership and political realities would be judged before deciding when and where elections will be fought by the country.

Could AAP use its constitution to remove lokpal Admiral Ramdas?-DNA

Controversy over who stays who goes in the Aam Aadmi Party continues, as news surfaced Thursday of the pending removal of Admiral (retired) Laxminarayan Ramdas as the party’s internal Lokpal. The party reacted quickly to such reports, putting out an official statement where it “strongly condemns mischievous news reports in a section of media about the party’s lokpal -- Admiral (retired) Ramdas. The party terms these reports as false, misleading and based on fiction done with a malicious intent”. The statement added that the party “outrightly rejects all frustrated attempts to drag the name of Admiral Ramdas into controversy”.

Why then the controversy?
However, behind the scenes are hints that the Admiral may be on his way out. There is a feeling that he may have overshot his mandate by writing the letter to the National Executive when it met on February 26. The letter was extremely critical of some of the party’s practices and was the first concrete evidence of rifts within AAP. Talking about the many “crisis situations in the party” it referred to Prashant Bhushan’s unhappiness with the candidate selection, the controversy of Arvind Kejriwal being both Delhi CM and national convenor, breakdown in communications and problems in the internal party democracy, among many other things. 

Is the party divided over him?
Sources confirm that there is a certain section in the party that want Ramdass out for daring to speak up against Kejriwal and criticise the party. Calling this section the party’s “suicide squad” a senior leader said that they don’t know how much damage they will do by removing Ramdas. According to this leader, Ramdas needs to be requested to stay on after his term is over.

What does the constitution say?

 Another senior leader called these reports “pure conjecture”, however, said that there is reason to remove Ramdas according to the party’s constitution, which calls for members of the party lokpal retiring after a year. The Admiral has held his post for almost two-and-a-half years. These technicalities could be easily used to justify Ramdas stepping down, if the party does go down that path. Exploiting the rules of the constitution would provide the perfect excuse for a party known to hold the position of lokpal in the highest regard, buffering it against accusations of interfering with the ombudsman or vindictiveness against anyone who criticises Kejriwal. The matter is expected to be discussed further either in a meeting of the national executive, or in the national council itself on March 28.

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