Kejriwal wants to be Punjab CM, ditching Delhi


‘Haryanvi’ Arvind Kejriwal has always treated Delhi as a small stepping stone before he moves on to bigger titles. Kejriwal became Delhi CM in 2013 before resigning within 50 days in February 2014 to become Prime Minister of India as a consensus no-NDA candidate. He lost badly in the polls and fell back on the comforts of his small Delhi state.

However, with Punjab elections round the corner, Kejriwal has decided to bid for the Punjab CM post. On September 8, when Mr. Kejriwal began his four-day tour of Punjab, he said: “I have arrived. I will put up a tent and stay here until I have the Badals in jail for their wrongdoings.”

Mr. Kejriwal made a similar promise on February 14, 2015 when he was sworn in as the CM for the second time. “I’m staying in Delhi for five years to work for the people of Delhi,” he had said.

Kejriwal in Punjab

Kejriwal in Punjab

Unlike Delhi which is a small half-state, Punjab is a powerful and critical state bordering the failing terrorists-infested Pakistan.AAP has a good momentum in Punjab though it’s progress is hobbled by sex and corruption scandals engulfing most of the party leaders.

If Aam Aadmi Party sources are to be believed, Arvind Kejriwal is likely to be the party’s chief ministerial candidate for the Punjab elections next year, even though Kejriwal is from Haryana and has never lived in Punjab.

Sources said Mr Kejriwal, hampered by the limited powers vested with the Delhi Chief Minister, especially following the August 4 High Court order stating that the L-G is the administrative head, is keen to showcase a model of governance and that can only be done where he has wider powers.

“Of all the AAP leaders in Punjab, only Arvindji has been able to pull big crowds. People really like him and want their state free of the Badals and Captain,” said another AAP member.

Political observers have also taken note of Mr Kejriwal’s decreased involvement in matters relating to Delhi. Mr Kejriwal addresses fewer press conferences, his photographs have stopped adorning Delhi government advertisements and his tweets are not limited to Delhi. Punjab and the incumbent government find regular mention.

But Mr. Kejriwal’s Punjab plan, if true, has not gone down well with political experts. Already branded a ‘bhagoda’ after he quit as the Chief Minister the first time around in February 2014, the experts said the Delhi CM would find it hard to explain the shift to Delhiites.

A JNU professor, P. K. Dutta said,“CMs aren’t a transferable commodity. The people of Delhi will not forgive him”.