Senior leaders inaccessible: Has the VIP bug caught Aam Aadmi Party too? | delhi | Hindustan Times
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Senior leaders inaccessible: Has the VIP bug caught Aam Aadmi Party too?

The party held its second national executive meeting to deliberate on its strategy for the Lok Sabha polls. At the meeting some members said it had become difficult to reach out to senior leaders like Yogendra Yadav and Sanjay Singh.

delhi Updated: Feb 01, 2014 07:40 IST
Brajesh Kumar

Has the VIP bug got the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) too? Probably, going by the complaints of some AAP leaders who say their seniors have become inaccessible not only to the aam aadmi, but also to other party leaders.

“Inaccessibility of senior leaders was one of the issues raised at the party’s national executive meeting on Thursday,” a party leader told HT on the condition of anonymity.

The party held its second national executive meeting to deliberate on its strategy for the Lok Sabha poll, including the number of seats it wanted to contest and the issues it would take up.

At the meeting some members said it had become difficult to reach out to senior leaders like Yogendra Yadav and Sanjay Singh, whose phones feature interactive voice response system (IVRS) ever since the party came to power in Delhi.

“If you want to talk to any of these leaders you have to go through the IVRS and then a number of personal assistants,” said a party leader.

Another leader recounting his efforts at reaching one of the senior leaders said he was asked to drop a message on his number and told that the leader would call back. “He never called back, of course.”

“If the senior party leaders are inaccessible to other party leaders, how can an aam aadmi expect to reach them?” he asked. “It is sending wrong signal to the thousands of volunteers all across the country that leaders of Aam Aadmi Party have become khaas (VIPs),” he said.

The same leader, however, added that after the issue was raised, the national executive decided to smoothen the communication process within the party. “The senior leaders promised that they would soon resolve the matter,” he added.

Leaders like Yogendra Yadav, Sanjay Singh and Manish Sisodia had opted for IVRS on their phone after they were inundated with calls following the party’s spectacular victory in the Delhi assembly elections.

If you call Yogendra Yadav you hear a pre-recorded message which says, “Ji, mein Yogendra Yadav bol raha hoon. Yeh meri recorded voice hai aur mera koi saathi aapse jald baat karega. Agar aap English mein baat karma chahte hein to ek dabayein, agar aap media se hein to do dabayein, agar aap Haryana se hein to teen dabayein.”

Defending the existing system, a party leader said the number of calls these leaders get on a daily basis is impossible to handle.

Kejriwal on Khap

Delhi chief minister and AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal said there was no question of banning Khap panchayats. “Khap panchayats are a group of people who come together. There is no bar on people to assemble in this country ... (But) whenever they take a wrong decision, whenever they take an illegal decision, they ought to be punished,” he told Reuters on Monday.