Here are 10 things they’ve been doing away from media glare, that will prove why they’re still relevant and why both Delhi & India still need them.
1. USING MOHALLA SABHAS TO UNDERSTAND THEIR CONSTITUENCIES’ PROBLEMS & DOING REAL WORK TO SOLVE THEM
Even though they’re no longer part of the govt., AAP’s Delhi MLAs have been working hard. They run Mohalla Sabhas - meetings with residents & civic officials like ward councillors, discuss constituencies’ needs and take COLLECTIVE decisions on the utilisation of development funds. The impact? It ranges from extensive repair work to street lights, drains etc, installation of CCTVs for increasing safety, and facilitating pension schemes all the way to land donation for hospital construction (by the Residents’ Welfare Associations of Sangam Vihar). Saurabh Bharadwaj, Jarnail Singh, Bandana Kumari, Manish Sisodia, Mr. Binni are just a few of the many MLAs whose work has created a tangible impact in their localities.
This rather “small” list of ongoing projects initiated by GK MLA Saurabh Bharadwaj will open your eyes to the SHEER AMOUNT of work happening in Delhi
2. MAKING THEMSELVES TOTALLY ACCOUNTABLE TO THE PEOPLE WHO ELECTED THEM
These dedicated MLAs aren’t just doing the work left untouched by previous governments, they’re also making themselves accountable for the same, through self assessment and residents’ feedback. All the 27 AAP MLAs are submitting self-assessment reports two months ahead of completing a year, while GK MLA Saurabh Bharadwaj has started a campaign asking the local residents to do a social audit of his work. Even a cursory look at the first few report cards is enough to convince you of their intent and effort.
3. CONDUCTING COUNTLESS CLEANLINESS DRIVES WAY BEFORE MODI’S CAMPAIGN
If you thought they merely jumped on to Modi’s bandwagon, you’re wrong again. AAP units across the country have been selflessly involved in cleanliness efforts much before it became a “campaign”. The continuous cleaning efforts of the committed AAP Bangalore volunteers are proof that this is a genuine social movement rather than a typical political party that works only before the elections or during a campaign.
4. PROVING THE LABELS OF ‘ANARCHISTS’ & ‘RABBLE ROUSERS’ WRONG BY WORKING WITH THE GOVT. ON THE SWACCH BHARAT ABHIYAAN, AND TAKING IT TO THE NEXT LEVEL
If you secretly expected AAP to protest against Modis cleanliness drive & feel guilty about it, then we’re here to make you feel worse. While most of us only debated the drive from our air-conditioned living rooms, AAP joined in and spotlighted the deplorable working conditions of the Safai Karamcharis, who clean India everyday, but are invisible to us. AAP have made this overlooked group the brand ambassadors for their Clean India drive & are asking the nation to give them more respect and improve the conditions they work in.
5. AND CONTINUING THE EFFORTS WELL AFTER THE CAMPAIGN ENDED
AAP’s not just added depth to this campaign, its also raised a call to Indians to keep cleaning beyond this drive through ‘Shramdans’. This call to arms is also backed by solid steps taken after the drive, in which AAP has asked the residents of Delhi to submit photos of areas that were unclean. An astounding 2500 photos have been collected & submitted to the Govt. This has been quickly followed up by the next phase asking residents to provide post complaint status updates on reported hotspots through ingenious WhatsApp groups.
Indian Express/ PTI Photo / Via indianexpress.com
6. SAVING ORDINARY MUMBAIKARS FROM HARASSMENT BY CORRUPT AUTHORITIES THROUGH THE ANTI-GRAFT HELPLINE
The Mumbai Anti corruption helpline is not only one of the best managed helplines launched by AAP, its also been successful in resolving many cases of harassment of ordinary citizens by corrupt government officials, by schools imposing extortionate fee hikes (St. Augustine in Nerul), and even the Police.
Mumbai Mirror / Via mumbaimirror.com
7. DONATING 5.4 CRORES & HELPING WITH RELIEF WORK IN J&K
AAP and its MLAs have tied up with NGOs to send relief material to the J&K valley, and the AAP J&K unit is actively involved in relief work. Not only this, the 27 elected MLAs from Delhi have each donated Rs. 20 lakhs from the development funds available to their constituencies collecting a total of Rs 5.40 crores. Try and up that!
Zee Media Bureau / Via zeenews.india.com
8. CONTINUING TO BE THE ONLY PARTY THAT FIGHTS FOR PEOPLE SYSTEMATICALLY MARGINALISED BY SOCIETY & GOVT.
Sushil Kumar Verma/ The Hindu / Via aamaadmiparty.org
FIGHTING FOR THE E RICKSHAW OWNERS’ RIGHT TO A LIVELIHOOD
AAP has been campaigning vigorously to get the Central Government to modify its e-rickshaw policy & enable nearly 200,000 drivers, whose fate hangs in balance because of an exorbitant registration fee of Rs. 5 LACS (MORE THAN 5 TIMES THE COST OF THE E-RICKSHAW ITSELF), to start earning again. E-rickshaws’ low cost and high efficiency make them a very good means of providing livelihood to the economically disadvantaged while improving the transport infrastructure in Delhi, but Govt. policies currently prevent this from happening.
The discrimination against Indian Language medium based UPSC candidates, the espousal of the Safai Karamcharis are just some of the other examples of fights it has taken up on the behalf of those ignored by the mainstream.
9. RESTORING OUR FAITH IN THE COUNTRY’S FUTURE THROUGH THE VALUES THEY SEEK TO FOSTER.
The five-point pledge administered by Arvind Kejriwal to AAPs newly launched Youth Wing members are a stark reminder of ideals long forgotten by a society in decline, but are values that MUST be revived and inculcated in our youth if we want to change the country.
wazirganj / Via aamaadmiparty.org
10. AND FINALLY, THIS….
A photograph that captures something no articles, news reports or audits can- One man’s integrity & its ability to give hope to countless other volunteers (a 1,00,000 of them full time) and members who want genuine change for all.
AAP’s ability to be an honest & constructive counterpoint to a rotting political establishment, that thrives on empty chest beating and ignores the weakest sections of our society, is perhaps what makes them even more relevant to today and the future than they were a year ago.
Don’t let the dream die, head on over to FB, find out more about what AK and AAP get upto by liking the Aam Aadmi Party page on Facebook.