New Delhi,Aradhna Wal(web team): Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal's landing in Delhi kicked off a series…
New Delhi,Aradhna Wal(dna): Dissenting Aam Aadmi Party leaders Prashant Bhushan and Yogendra Yadav were voted off the party’s parliamentary affairs committee by the national executive. The NE had secreted itself away for this crucial meeting, internal rifts in the party spilled over into ugly public spats between Arvind Kejriwal loyalists and Bhushan and Yadav. Eleven people voted against the two while eight votes were cast in their favour, counting their own. Sources say that Anand Kumar and Ajit Jha voted for the two.
Being voted off the highest decision making body of the party bores ill for the two of them. There is a strong possibility that they will resign from party altogether.
The meeting went badly from the very beginning. Sources say it was a predetermined effort to oust two core founding members of the party, the two who had stood by Kejriwal through thick and thin to make him the man he is today. Anand Kumar, however, tried to adopt conciliatory and hopeful tone with the media, saying the party would emerge united. Sources say, most members came with minds made up to get Bhushan and Yadav off the PAC.
A view apparently shared by national convenor Kejriwal. The ugly meeting could have been avoided altogether however. Sources say that on Monday, Bhushan messaged Kejriwal asking him to meet one on one. Kejriwal refused to answer. Instead, he sent a message through NE member Pankaj Gupta that he would resign as convenor if the two remained on the PAC.
Frenetic backroom negotiations, led by NE members Gupta, Anand Kumar, Ajit Jha and Gopal Rai to avert an ugly showdown were on for the past few days.
Gupta had met Arvind and Kumar had been on the phone with most NE members.
Tuesday morning, Kejriwal sent in his resignation to the NE, and like last week’s meet on February 26, did not attend.
At the end of the meeting, Kumar Vishwas, who had mediated the NE, announced that Bhushan and Yadav were voted off the PAC while Kejriwal’s resignation as national convenor was rejected. The loyalists had clearly won.
It is not yet known if the NE has given Kejriwal a free hand to reconstitute the PAC, something leaders Ashish Khetan and Ashutosh had argued for vociferously. Contrary to some reports, Bhushan and Yadav have not offered to resign on their own accord. However, sources say they were asked by the party to resign on their own terms and take up other posts instead. Reportedly, Bhushan had been offered the post of the party’s legal head and Yadav the post of state convenor. Recently Yadav had also said that he would do the work the party gave him and continue with his Kisan Morcha activities.
Since the two did not accept this offer, the NE passed a resolution to vote on their membership in the PAC.