The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) on Monday announced that it would contest all 70 seats in the Delhi assembly elections to be held later this year.
However, speculation is rife about which seat AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal will choose to contest.
Given the fact that he chose to camp at east Delhi’s Sundar Nagari to fast against inflated and water bills, the natural choice would have been the Seemapuri constituency, in which the area falls.
This was also the area from where Kejriwal and party spokesperson Manish Sisodia began work of grassroot development as part of their Parivartan campaign in 2004-05.
These notions were, however, dispelled by an AAP source who pointed out that Seemapuri was a reserved seat. “That rules out Kejriwal as a candidate from here,” the source said.
“Thirteen of the 70 assembly seats are reserved for Scheduled Castes. There is rotation every 3-4 years. Whether it will happen this year or not, we don’t know. So, he (Kejriwal) cannot zero in on any constituency till such announcement is made,” another source added.
The AAP also announced a procedure for the selection of “clean candidates” with help from the common man.
Of the other AAP leaders -- including Prashant Bhushan, Yogender Yadav, Gopal Rai, Sanjay Singh and Kumar Vishwas -- “it is not sure who will fight the elections and who will work for poll management,” Sisodia said.
The selection process involves nomination of a candidate with support of a minimum 100 voters.
A screening committee will sift through the applications to choose five candidates for every constituency, and finally people will vote to further bring down the number of candidates.
“The candidates shortlisted will be interviewed by the party’s political affairs committee,” he said.
“Any negative information about a candidate substantiated with proof will disqualify him. The process would be over in about two months,” Sisodia said.