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HindustanTimes Sun,23 Nov 2014

AAP posters across Capital raise eyebrows

Nivedita Khandekar, Hindustan Times  New Delhi , September 06, 2013
First Published: 22:48 IST(6/9/2013) | Last Updated: 01:45 IST(7/9/2013)

As the campaign for the Delhi assembly polls gathers pace, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Friday hung posters at flyovers and foot bridges in the Capital to attract maximum eyeballs.

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The initial idea was for AAP volunteers to hold the posters while standing on flyovers or foot bridges. But they left the posters hanging by the railings and concrete fences.

The party had always shown innovation in its campaign. It first pasted posters on the back of auto-rickshaws. Then it asked people to put up banners and hoardings on the walls of their houses.

But the new effort may land the party in trouble with the municipal authorities and the police.

At ITO, the AAP volunteers hung a banner on the foot overbridge right across the police headquarters. Soon, police personnel came and asked the volunteers to pull it up.

The long flyover near Kashmere Gate ISBT too saw a huge banner flying on one of its arms. There, however, with no authorities in site, the banner hung for a long time. Banners were put up on several other flyovers.

The party, which has already announced that it is fighting the assembly polls on donation, claims it does not have money to buy paid sites for such advertisements.

The party has been devising innovative ways to display their leader Arvind Kejriwal's face and the broom, the party's symbol.
 
According to the municipal corporation regulations, hanging banners neither falls into the category of putting up hoardings nor amounts to defacing public property. "But, nevertheless, our zonal officers can always pull them down as these banners are hung at unauthorised sites," an officer said. 

A senior North Delhi corporation officer said he did not want to be involved 'in the game of political one-upmanship'.

"Volunteers standing on busy flyovers can be a potential risk to their own lives and also become a traffic hazard," a traffic police officer said.

A Delhi police officer said, "If we receive receive any complaints, we can take action for defacement of public property."

Manish Sisodia, AAP spokesperson, said human banners are supposed to be held in hands.

"However, if those are hung along the flyovers and if anybody asks us to remove them, we will do so."


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