Anti-corruption campaigner Anna Hazare will not attend the swearing-in ceremony of his former protege and Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) leader Arvind Kejriwal on Saturday despite Delhi’s chief minister-elect personally extending an invitation to him.
Hazare’s aide Dadda Awari said Kejriwal had telephoned Hazare yesterday following AAP’s victory in the Delhi Assembly elections and invited him for the oath-taking function at Ramlila Maidan, the venue of the 77-year-old Gandhian’s fast for Lokpal in 2011.
“Kejriwal called Anna yesterday and requested him to attend the swearing-in but he expressed his inability…Anna extended his best wishes to Kejriwal for running a good government,” Awari told PTI.
Hazare is in Pune today for a routine health check-up, Awari said without elaborating on whether any health issues prevented him from attending the event.
Hazare had also skipped Kejriwal’s swearing-in ceremony when he became Delhi chief minister for the first time in 2013.
After a long association in the anti-corruption movement, the two drifted apart when Kejriwal decided to launch his political outfit Aam Aadmi Party against Hazare’s wishes.
Though Hazare has often called party politics a “cesspool”, he had yesterday congratulated Kejriwal on AAP’s stupendous success.