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HindustanTimes Wed,22 Oct 2014

Delhi: Local issues in mind, AAP opts for area-specific manifestos

Nivedita Khandekar, Hindustan Times  New Delhi, March 20, 2014
First Published: 01:22 IST(20/3/2014) | Last Updated: 01:24 IST(20/3/2014)

On the lines of the 2013 assembly polls, some of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) candidate-designates in Delhi are in the process of preparing constituency-specific manifestos for the April 10 parliamentary elections.

The party had already made it clear that it will release the national (common) manifesto and leave it to the individual candidates to prepare his or her manifesto. “It is desirable, but not compulsory for several reasons,” AAP leader Yogendra Yadav had said then.

Of the seven seats in Delhi, three of the AAP candidates are already in the process of preparing their own manifestos, two have not yet decided and two have said they do not plan to go ahead with it.

Northeast Delhi candidate-designate Prof Anand Kumar, South Delhi candidate-designate Col Devender Sehrawat and West Delhi candidate-designate Jarnail Singh are in the process of finalising constituency-specific manifestos.

Sehrawat said the 10 local manifestos prepared for the assembly constituencies acted as the base. Feedback from AAP MLAs from the area and that from the people during his padyatras were added to them.

“Apart from that, I stay overnight in each of the assembly seats under my constituency for two days to get a feel of things. For instance, to know how much water that colony gets and at what time; connectivity for the area, especially in view of school children, etc,” Sehrawat told HT.

For Prof Anand, it was more or less the same process. The 10 manifestos prepared were readily available and the content was topped up by feedback from almost 50-odd meetings across the whole Northeast Delhi constituency to absorb voices from the ground. Ranging from civic amenities to water availability and Yamuna floodplains/banks to welfare of vulnerable groups such as women, disabled and certain members of the minority community, varied issues find a place in the draft manifesto. “This draft will be finalised in two-three days,” he said.

Singh said he was in talks with the party’s Delhi office to streamline things. “Most others face a severe time crunch as their names were declared pretty late, so we are not insisting that they prepare a constituency-specific manifesto,” said a party leader.


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