The Aam Aadmi Party's national executive (NE) meets on Wednesday to discuss the future roles of its senior leaders Prashant Bhushan and Yogendra Yadav in its political affairs committee (PAC) following their differences with Arvind Kejriwal and his loyalists.
The infighting within the party came out in the public after letters from one camp questioned Kejriwal's style of functioning and the absence of an internal ethics committee. The sharp differences were visible with allegations that Prashant Bhushan and Yadav were trying to "remove" Kejriwal from the post of party convener.
According to sources, AAP founding members Yadav and Bhushan will be asked to step down from their posts in the PAC or assume non-active roles amid difference on various issues. They will not be asked to leave the party but if they choose to do so, they will not be stopped, they added.
With a series of letters leaked to the media - one by party lokpal Admiral L Ramdas, one by Yadav and Bhushan, one by Dilip Pandey and finally a rebuttal by Yadav – serious differences within the AAP, including Kejriwal's role in the party, have tumbled out.
While Ramdas pointed to two camps emerging within the top leadership and asking the AAP to reconsider 'one-man, one-post' arrangement, others raised a number of problems including the treatment of volunteers, money management, donations, etc.
Pandey's letter and Singh's statements, however, show that these issues are being interpreted as a conspiracy against Kejriwal.
The Hindustan Times answers some obvious questions like why has the PAC become so powerful, who are a part of the NE and what is the real controversy.
Here are the answers:
The PAC has 9 members: Arvind Kejriwal, Gopal Rai, Ilias Azmi, Kumar Vishwash, Manish Sisodia, Pankaj Gupta, Prashant Bhushan, Sanjay Singh and Yogendra Yadav.
The NE comprises of 21 members. They are: Arvind Kejriwal, Manish Sisodia, Prashant Bhushan, Sanjay Singh, Kumar Vishwas, Naveen Jaihind, Dinesh Waghela, Yogendra Yadav, Ajit Jha, Christina Samy, Anand Kumar, Habung Payeng, Yogesh Dahiya, Subhash Ware, Krishnakant Sevada, Mayank Gandhi, Rakesh Sinha and Prem Singh Pahari.
It is being said Kejriwal is not comfortable with the presence of Bhushan and Yadav in the PAC and wants more freedom. Whether or not the party should expand nationally is also one of the bones of contention.
The rule book
The NE was meant to be the real executive body. The PAC was to operate and take quick calls between two NE meetings.
But, as Yadav earlier pointed out, the PAC has become all powerful and fewer and fewer NE meets are taking place. This confines decision-making only to a few people.
Also, the reconstitution of PAC has been on the agenda for a while. Even the AAP's internal lokpal has said it does not have the right representation of women, regions and communities.