Ahead of the Delhi Assembly elections to be held sometime later this year, Aam Aadmi Party leader Arvind Kejriwal on Friday announced the names of 44 shortlisted candidates for 12 constituencies. In an interview with HT, Kejriwal spoke about his electoral plans and choice of candidates.
What qualities are you looking for in a potential candidate?
The candidate should be honest, possess a good character and a clean image and should have worked in the area from where he wants to contest the elections. He should be from the grassroots. We are carefully running a background check on each aspirant.
You have received 106 applications for 12 assembly segments and you have shortlisted 44. Not too many people seems to have shown interest in contesting under your party’s banner.
To ensure we are not flooded with applications, we have kept a condition that each application should be accompanied with 100 signatures from voters supporting the candidature. It proved a big deterrent. Trust me, it is not easy to get 100 people sign your candidature.
Political parties give consideration to religion, caste and sub-castes while giving out tickets. Are you considering these factors while shortlisting candidates?
All parties have been doing politics on these issues. We want to break these barriers. But we will certainly ensure that all groups get representation in our final list of candidates.
How confident are you of the success of Aam Aadmi Party in Delhi elections?
Aam Aadmi Party will form the government in Delhi this time.
But do you have the cadre to work at the grassroots level and swing votes in your favour?
No one can judge the undercurrent of dissent against the Congress and the BJP. The kind of response that we are getting is overwhelming.
Will your party announce the chief minister candidate before the elections?
We are still deliberating on it and will take a decision soon.
Which assembly seat are you going to contest the election from?
I will contest the elections but I have not made up my mind about the seat. I would like to contest from the place where our movement got strength.