AVAM fury has more to do with a scorned Karan Singh

NEW DELHI(PTI): One man has proved to be the biggest thorn in the flesh for Aam Admi Party in the upcoming Delhi Assembly elections: Karan Singh, founder of AVAM, the AAP Volunteers’ Action Manch.

A former party volunteer, Singh was unceremoniously ejected from AAP last year when, ostensibly, AVAM tried to get volunteers to join BJP. At the heart of the matter lies a fake SMS, a fake ID created by one Deepak Chaudhary from Patel Nagar AAP Youth Wing, and Singh’s anger at his belittlement.

A Haryanvi from Hisar, Singh claims to have joined AAP at Arvind Kejriwal’s personal behest in December 2012. In a news conference on February, he claimed that he was ‘publicly’ given charge of volunteer rights and grievances in the party by Kejriwal. He was close enough to Kejriwal that he was seen operating from the party chief’s room when Kejriwal was the Delhi CM.

Trouble happened when, apparently, Singh’s work made him immensely popular with volunteers. So popular that party higher-ups objected to his referendum on volunteer rights mechanism. “Atishi Marlena (spokesperson) and Arvind Kejriwal said that a referendum would be mutiny,” Singh said. “I think Arvindji became insecure that volunteers would start siding with me.” This referendum became the blueprint for AVAM.

This is when, Singh says, the party started an SMS campaign to “tarnish my image”. On July 12 and 13, bulk texts from what looked like an AVAM id were sent out to volunteers, saying that the group’s new id was MD-AAVAAM, and that “AAP not listening to volunteers… Modi ji has given hope 2 India. We’ll talk to BJP. All AVAM vol will join BJP if they agree to our demand.”

Singh was first summoned by the Delhi Disciplinary Committee and then sacked on July 19, 2014 by Arvind Kejriwal on the charges of anti-party activity. He says that this bulk SMS was a set up by people within the party to oust him. “They expelled me on the basis of an accusation, without getting any confirmation,” says Singh.

Singh filed a complaint with the Enforcement Directorate in August, which was then transferred to the Naraina thana, the locality where he resides and then to Ranjit Nagar thana in Patel Nagar, where Deepak Chaudhary lives. The police have not yet filed an FIR.

At Naraina, Singh found out that Chaudhary created MD-AAVAAM by taking the services of M/S Pinnacle Teleservices Pvt. Ltd, which is AAP’s website vendor.

“Deepak was instructed by people within the party. Now they have sent him underground,” says Singh. “I heard they moved him from his house.”

Though he has his suspicions who is the mastermind, getting to the bottom of this mystery seems to be his driving force against AAP. So angry is he, that at news conferences called to showproof AAP’s alleged funding scam, he kept diverting the issue to how badly he was treated.

However, in Patel Nagar’s Shadi Kampur village, most know Chaudhary’s name and that he is an AAP worker. His housemate Rajinder Chauhan aka Vicky confirms they’ve been living together for three years. dna tried to reach Chaudhary but he did not answer his phone.

There is no rest for AVAM, as they are working on more evidence against AAP. How this holds up is to be seen. Meanwhile, they have raised enough hell and given serious political arsenal to rivals Congress and BJP. AAP had to bring out one of its biggest names, former top banker Meera Sanyal, to defend the party’s transactions.

There have been suspicions of AVAM being hand in glove with the BJP. Neil Terrance, part of AVAM had claimed to be part of BJP on Facebook. He explained it to the media as a prank to irritate the saffron party and denied any ties with them.

On the face of it, for Singh, AAP’s loss is good for the party and the nation as it will give it a chance to clean house.