“AAP is no different from Shiv Sena and MNS”

In an interview with Hardnews, former diplomat and the founder of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), Madhu Bhaduri said the AAP is no different from other parties. Bhaduri recently resigned from the party after she was heckled and not allowed to speak
Souzeina S Mushtaq Delhi

“For AAP, the idea of accountability is restricted to monetary corruption. Corruption for that party is not corruption in society; it is just corruption when a bribe is given or money changes hands. I have been constantly asking them how do they define corruption- policy, ideology or only bribery? Rishwat dena, Rishwat lena, that is their definition of corruption,” Madhu Bhaduri, a former diplomat and one of the founder members of AAP told Hardnews

Bhaduri said that since AAP came into power, its very objectives and methods have changed. Bhaduri recently resigned from the party following the night raid spearheaded by Delhi Law Minister, Somnath Bharti in Khirki Extension, a ghetto inhabited by foreign nationals alleging drug racket and prostitution on the intervening night of January 15 and 16. 

Bhaduri, who was a member of three party committees including the one on gender justice, alleged that an attempt to speak about the incident at the party national executive meet was thwarted by senior party leader Yogendra Yadav who had told her not to create a scene in front of the media. Within no time, Bhaduri was heckled pushed out from the stage and then out of the venue.

According to her the party should have tendered an apology instead of supporting the minister. “A mistake has been made, and it can be corrected to the extent correction is possible by apologizing. I had a text with me, and that was a four-line resolution,” she said. According to her, the text of the resolution was as follows: 

"The National Council of AAP unanimously resolves to tender an apology to the women from Uganda and Nigeria, living in Khirki Extension, who were forced to submit themselves to drug tests at the behest of some members and supporters of AAP on the night of 15/16 Jan, 2014. The party deeply regrets the humiliation caused to the women. The AAP distances itself from any racist comments made by the party and apologises for any such comments by its members and supporters. The AAP is not racist." 

She also said that the party had a mentality of Khaap and did not respect women. Claiming that the AAP is on dangerous path, Bhaduri said the raid on January 15 and 16 was an attack on humanity. “The party talks about insaniyat. What is the insaniyat that they did in Khirki? Four helpless women and a whole mob after them. This was humiliation. That night, as I said to the delegates, there were two attacks on insaniyat. One was that seven to eight people died on the streets of Delhi because of cold and second was this (Khirki incident). This is not insaniyat,” she said. 

“Firstly, many people died due to cold. There was no answerability on this issue. Secondly, women were insulted in the middle of the night. The party is silent on both these issues," she said.

She also said that she had been seeing the trend of the party since July last year, and was getting “uncomfortable.” She also slammed the party for not having an ideology.

“Ideology does not mean writing long essays on whether you are Right, Left or Centre. Ideology is reflected in your priorities. You cannot conceal it once you are in power because your priorities show,” she said.

She also said that the AAP was desperate to win elections and was no different from other parties. "If the gram sabhas and Mohalla sabhas are going to be like the National Council meeting where I was heckled, then what does it mean? It means flare up the prejudice of the majority and promote majoritarianism. It will mean disaster, with no protection for the minorities, women, for people with different sexual inclinations, and anybody who is not in a majority, who does not have votes. This is no different from Shiv Sena and MNS,” she said.