Delhi Assembly polls: Support for Kejriwal's AAP swells, many RWA members join party
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Members of resident welfare associations (RWAs), who contested mostly as independent candidates in municipal or Assembly elections earlier, seem to be supporting the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) this time. Several of them have joined AAP in various positions.
The party's Gandhi Nagar candidate Anil Bajpai is president of East RWA Federation. He claimed "at least 70 to 80 per cent RWAs in East Delhi are backing AAP".
"I was a secretary in the Delhi Pradesh Congress Committee but left it in protest against the power tariff hike by the state government. I then joined Arvind Kejriwal as one of the main issues raised by him concerns the power tariff hike. I continue to hold my RWA post but I want to show people that an honest man can also contest elections," he said.
Ranju Minhas, an RWA secretary in the Masjid Moth area, now works as a mahila coordinator for AAP. "I joined the party as I was already doing social work and wanted to prove that an ordinary person can do a good job as an administrator than seasoned politicians and should not be scared of taking up the challenge," Minhas, who contested as an independent candidate in the civic elections in 2007, said.
According to her, many RWAs from across the city have associated themselves with AAP. "Several RWA members have come out in support of AAP. They include members of RWAs from Krishna Nagar, Khirki Extension and Lajpat Nagar, among others," she said.
Vijay Choudhary, general secretary of East of Kailash RWA, has been associated with AAP for the last two-and-half years. "I cannot force people in my RWA to support the party but many members support my association with AAP," Choudhary said.
Greater Kailash RWA member Rajiv Kakria, however, said it was best for RWAs to keep away from politics. "It leads to conflict of interest in many cases. I feel RWAs should keep away from politics if they can," he said.