Business Standard

AAP's new definition: Asking the people

The party is asking people to respond through various technologies whether it should accept outside political support or not

Arvind Kejriwal
Related News

In an unprecedented move, the (AAP) has used a bouquet of technology instruments to not only get to political power but also conduct a on whether it should accept outside political support to form a government or not.

The Congress party is waiting to hear what AAP’s unique consultation will reveal. Privately, its leaders contend it will lead to the newest party on the block being exposed if it accepts office, as it will be unable to implement the promises it made in its manifesto. For instance, halving power rates.

Nor are other parties jumping to replicate AAP’s model of leveraging mobile connectivity to hear what voters want. For the first time, people have been asked by a political party for their opinion on a likely alliance with a rival.

So far, a record 600,000 have participated in the referendum, says AAP, to decide if it should accept support from the Congress and form a government. People have been asked to send a ‘yes’ or ‘No’ through mediums such as text messages (on number 8806110335), online polls (on the party website), and recorded telephone lines. AAP activists are also to organise small meetings at block levels in all the 70 city constituencies. The results will be announced, with an overall result, on Monday.

AAP leader says people are stakeholders in the formation of a government, so it is imperative to have their opinion. “When we saw there is a fractured mandate in Delhi and, hence, no clarity, we thought we should go to the public and take their view. After all, we need to form a government for them,” he said.

The party said it had adopted the already prevalent exercises of participatory democracy followed in parts of countries such as America, Switzerland and Brazil. “The budgetary allocations at Porto Alegre in Brazil are decided based on discussion through general body meetings and the views of people are factored in,” said Pandey. A similar practice is followed in 70 cities of Brazil, according to Unesco.

It seems to have touched a chord— 300,000 sent responses within four hours of the first announcement. But, are they all AAP members or supporters? Couldn’t the Congress – understandably anxious to avoid another election right now – have manipulated the result of the ‘referendum’?

The party says it has been very careful. “We are aware of possibilities of manipulation and have implemented certain checks,” says one of the party workers, who refused to be identified. For instance, the computer will accept only the first response from a particular phone number or Internet Protocol address, unique to every computer. For this, the party has tied with a telecom operator in Maharashtra.

Special software would de-duplicate the responses and produce a result in a short time. In this, some say, AAP has bested the Election Commission of India.

Expectedly, the Bharatiya Janata Party says it isn’t impressed. “We have already been tested and have been voted the single largest party in a free and fair election. We are clear that AAP does not have the mandate to rule, especially with the help of a party they had vowed to defeat and throw out forever. This ‘referendum is just a spurious alibi to get at what they really want – political power,” said a BJP activist.

Read more on:   

Read More

People want our government in Delhi: Manish Sisodia

AAP leader says a final decision will be taken only after they evaluate the results of the opinion poll

Columnists Rss icon

Claude Smadja

Claude Smadja: Trying the 'pivot', again
Claude Smadja

On his trip to Asia, Barack Obama will have to counter the impression that the US is an increasingly reluctant superpower

T S Vishwanath

T S Vishwanath: EU seeks to bridge the skill gap
T S Vishwanath

A new directive on intra-corporate transfers of skilled professionals seeks to address a key demographic challenge in a progressive manner

Editorial Comment Rss icon

Bearish on China

The giant economy is slowing, with worrying consequences

A long road

Industrial recovery needs tough institutional reforms

@mohanmurarisha1 Dhanyawaad
@RahulBose1 thanks :)
The link to the #Political Roots with me 21th April 2014 on NDTV is Enjoyed doing this interview at my Old School
"Man consists of two parts,his mind & his body. Only d body has more fun",Woody Allen.( for voting both r needed. Pl go, vote & feel good)
Latest interview of RG 'Modi has a strong predilection for crony capitalism: Rahul Gandhi - The Times of India'
RT @akhand_tripathi: @MPNaveenJindal कायरता मौत का पहला सोपान है .अद्भुत विचार.तिरंगे को हवा में लहराते हुए शान से घूमने का आनंद आप की बदौल…
Excellent! #The5VoterProject "@ActorInLife: @Panda_Jay . I took 13 ppl along with me to vote :)”
7 multilingual minutes of my words outside the polling booth on April 10:
RT @NRK1979: @swamy39 Sir, it is owned by MGM Resorts Interntl & Infinity World Development. infinity is Dubai based and it doesn't even ha…
A vote for NDA is a vote for a Govt. that will lay the foundation of a Bhavya & Divya Bharat that we will be proud of
Yes. I am going to contest my 11th direct election. I have fought 10 elections already from four states. @VijayDeenanath
If religious leaders, yoga teachers, media personalities & business tycoons can express an opinion why not college principals?
My article on reforming the Indian Parliament in TOI today.
.@anuragdhanda Anurag. This is not dharna. Hum sadhna aur prarthna karne ja rahe hain.
Prime Minister Dr Manmohan Singh is in Guwahati today to cast his vote for the 16th Lok Sabha election-
@siddhu_vp good luck! Im always part of the gud fight!

Back to Top