Following poor performance of Aam Aadmi Party in Punjab and Goa Assembly elections recently, party chief Arvind Kejriwal has repeatedly found himself getting involved in several controversies one after other. While some controversies Kejriwal has invited, for some he has been found to be responsible. The controversies ahead of the MCD election 2017, however, aren’t good signs for AAP which is trying to beat BJP and the Congress.
Here we take a look at five controversies that have dogged Arvind Kejriwal in the last one month:
1. Accused of paying personal legal charges with public money
Kejriwal has been accused of seeking to pay the charges of his “personal” legal battle against Union Finance Minister Arun Jaitley from the taxpayers’ money. The Delhi CM is facing a number of defamation cases against many personalities. Anil Baijal, Delhi L-G, has reportedly sought Solicitor General Ranjit Kumar’s advice in clearing bills of Ram Jethmalani, who has been fighting for AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal in a defamation case against Arun Jaitley in a city court. In this regard, Delhi Deputy CM Manish Sisodia had sent a note to the Delhi law department in December to release the appearance fee of Jethmalani.
2. Accused of unnecessarily raking up a controversy over alleged use rigged EVMs during assembly election
Arvind Kejriwal has claimed that the electronic voting machines used in recent assembly elections were rigged. This led to AAP defeat in Punjab and Goa. The Delhi CM even demanded to do away with the EVMs and conduct the MCD election 2017 with ballot papers. The EC has, however, said the EVMs cannot be tampered with.
3. Found maintaining a secret “feedback unit” and spying on private institution with public money
The Aam Aadmi Party chief Arvind Kejriwal has been accused of running a secret spy unit that was allegedly used for snooping on a private entity.
4. Asked by Delhi L-G to pay Rs 97 crore bill spent on advertisements from AAP account.
Delhi Lieutenant Governor Anil Baijal has directed the chief secretary of Delhi government to recover an amount of Rs 97 crore from Aam Admi Party within 30 days. The party had allegedly “splurged” the government money on advertisements and violated Supreme Court guidelines. Not only this, Baijal also ordered an enquiry into the spendings on advertisements to promote AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal and his party and fix responsibility.
5. Open revolt of AAP leaders, use of ‘Aam’ on banners in Delhi
Following the defeat in Assembly elections, several AAP leaders have revolted against the top AAP leadership, including Kejriwal. They have accused Kejriwal and other top leaders of being indulged in corruption and behaving in a dictatorial fashion with small leaders. Some leaders have joined other parties.
(With agency inputs)