AAP leader Mayank Gandhi contended on Saturday that the lack of transparency within the party was alienating workers, a reflection of the growing rift between him and Delhi chief minister Arvind Kejriwal.
Gandhi had earlier said in a post on his blog that Kejriwal insisted on the ouster of senior leaders Prashant Bhushan and Yogendra Yadav from the Aam Aadmi Party’s political affairs committee at a national executive meeting on Wednesday. He contended their removal went “against the overwhelming sentiments” of AAP volunteers.
In another post on his blog on Saturday, the leader from Maharashtra questioned the “gag order” imposed by Kejriwal to prevent AAP members from speaking about the national executive meet.
“A volunteer identifies and considers AAP as part of their existence, but the walls built between them, the committees and their non-transparent decisions have alienated them,” he wrote in a post that he described as a note “from the heart”.
Gandhi said a “concerted attempt is being made in social media to call me anti-party and anti-(Arvind Kejriwal)”. He said that attacks have been launched against him by AAP leader Ashish Khetan and others. “Some dissatisfied members from Maharashtra have started giving interviews against me,” he added.
The AAP may decide “not to fight BMC elections” and the “leadership of Maharashtra will be challenged and discredited by some individuals”, he claimed. “More will come and I will be finally humiliated so much that I will quit.”
AAP workers should “participate in the party functioning in the best tradition of Swaraj” and be “non-confrontational, graceful, respectful to the leadership and constructive”, Gandhi said.
He said he had defied the gag order and written the blog posts only to express his concerns about the latest developments and to strengthen the party. “Let me reiterate, this is not any rebellion, nor against our leadership, nor to seek personal attention,” he wrote.
“As a disciplined worker, I am generally non-confrontational and have never spoken a word against the movement nor party since the past four years outside the appropriate forum. But now is the time to take a stand,” he added.
AAP, Gandhi wrote, should become a model party based on “participation, accountability, transparency, decentralization and integrity”. He noted that Kejriwal had himself spoken “hundreds of times on transparency, participation, accountability and the need to stay away from arrogance”.
He also called for minutes of the national executive meeting to be made public soon.
Gandhi abstained when the national executive meeting removed Yadav and Bhushan with an 11-8 vote. Bhushan, a senior lawyer, has been made head of AAP’s legal cell while Yadav has been offered the post of national convener in Maharashtra.