AAP chooses volunteers over veterans in third list

  • Darpan Singh, Hindustan Times, New Delhi
  • Updated: Dec 11, 2014 02:59 IST

The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in its third list on Wednesday dropped 10 candidates — including two outgoing MLAs — who fought the 2013 assembly elections on its tickets. The party instead chose to field its volunteers and turncoats who, they say, have a better chance of winning.

In its three lists, the party has so far announced 45 names to fight the coming elections next year.

It retained 18 outgoing MLAs, 11 candidates who lost in the previous election and fielded 16 new faces.

By the time all 70 names are announced, the party is likely to end up dropping 35 of its candidates of 2013, including nine outgoing MLAs.

While the party is yet to name 25 more names, including its chief ministerial candidate Arvind Kejriwal, the BJP and Congress haven’t started announcing any name for the elections.

As reported first by HT, AAP has decided to field former prime minister Lal Bahadur Shastri’s grandson Adarsh Shastri, a former apple executive, from Dwarka.

The party is relying on volunteers who have worked with it since it quit its 49-day government in February this year.

Nitin Tyagi, chosen for Laxmi Nagar, is AAP’s east Delhi in-charge. The party had sacked Vinod Kumar Binny, outgoing MLA from Laxmi Nagar, for indiscipline. Businessman Shiv Charan Goyal (Moti Nagar) is a long-standing volunteer.

Praveen Kumar replaces former Delhi Assembly speaker, MS Dhir in Jangpura. He contributed to the sprouting of the party’s several frontal organisations. Dhir has joined BJP.

AAP volunteer Rituraj Jha, chosen for Kirari, led to an increased vote share in the constituency in the 2014 Lok Sabha elections.

But there are many who have come from other parties. BSP’s Sahi Ram who lost to BJP’s Ramesh Bidhuri only by about 6,000 votes in 2013 is AAP’s nominee in Tuglakabad.

SK Bagga (Krishna Nagar) comes from Congress, Kartar Singh (Chattarpur) was a two-time BJP councillor. Ved Prakash (Bawana) comes to AAP from BJP’s youth wing. Sharad Chauhan (Narela) had fought and lost the 2008 assembly elections on a BSP ticket only by 800 votes.

In its second list, AAP dropped its outgoing MLA from Patel Nagar, Veena Anand. There are some more outgoing MLAs AAP may be dropping. Ashok Kumar Chauhan (Ambedkar Nagar) has joined, Harish Khanna (Timarpur), Rajesh Garg (Rohini) have said they will not contest. AAP may or may not field Akhilesh Pati Tripathi (Model Town), Mahendra Yadav (Vikaspuri) and Dharmendra Koli (Seemapuri) following poor feedback from the ground.

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