Arvind Kejriwal’s decision to give up power is part of the Aam Aadmi Party’s (AAP) plans to bounce back to power in Delhi with a majority and grab a few Lok Sabha seats along the way.
Kejriwal had predicted the fate of his government soon after taking power in December. He had said his power won’t last beyond 48 hours. It eventually lasted only 49 days.
Since his government was at the mercy of the Congress, Kejriwal’s move to quit on his own terms makes sense. The party feels that it can notch a few more seats in a re-poll and get sympathy that both the Congress and BJP did not allow it to introduce Jan Lokpal Bill.
Read: For Kejriwal & Co, it is just the exit they had scripted
The move will enable Kejriwal to strategise and lead the Lok Sabha campaign of the party. The AAP has already announced to contest over 350 seats. “Although there is a huge interest in the party, people across the country want to see and hear Kejriwal,” a senior state leader told HT. Most pre-poll surveys have given the party a vote share of 7-8% and an equal number of seats.
Read: AAP hopes to hard-sell ‘sacrifice’ in run-up to LS polls
On its part, during its short stint in Delhi, AAP made every attempt to expand its horizons. As AAP spokesperson Anand Kumar once conceded, Delhi is a laboratory and the whole country was watching its performance here.
Read: I tried to work honestly, says Kejriwal
The party will also use Kejriwal to sort out factionalism in party’s various state units, including Goa, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh and Punjab. In Delhi, the party will hope to bounce back to power on its own encouraged by the logjam on the Jan Lokpal.
Read: Fiery day ends in resignation
Full Coverage: Arvind Kejriwal, a common man in politics
HT asks the following questions to understand the political impact of Kejriwal's decision to quit as Delhi CM.