NEW DELHI: While the ouster of Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan from the top leadership of AAP could be argued as an internal matter of the party, it seems that AAP is taking this approach – clipping feathers of those who raise dissenting voice – to governance as well.
Earlier we had seen how AAP volunteers were being allowed in Delhi state government meetings where they tried to interfere with functioning of bureaucracy. Then, the AAP government tried to strike a balance between ‘governance by the bureaucrats’ and ‘vigilantism by their volunteers’.
But recently, it seems that the Kejriwal government has come out openly in favor of volunteers and the party at the cost of bureaucrats and government officials.
There have been at least three such incidents in the past couple of days that shows that the Aam Aadmi Party is crushing dissent not only inside the party, but inside the government too.
On Monday, the government was reported to have transferred the PWD official who had earlier sent a notice to the then Education Minister of Delhi Manish Sisodia to vacate his government house last year, after Kejriwal had resigned as the Chief Minister.
The official was just doing his job as Sisodia was no more a part of the government and hence he needed to pay rent at market rate. But Sisodia, who is now the Deputy CM, seems to have taught a lesson to the employee for sending him a notice last year by getting him transferred.
A report in The Daily Pioneer mentions that senior IAS officers are now finding it difficult to handle AAP volunteers. Apparently, a senior IAS officer walked out of a presentation in a huff when she was constantly interrupted by AAP volunteers during a high-level meeting.
In another instance, a librarian was also transferred as she had refused to issue books to AAP workers. The librarian had said that the books were for the use of government employees only, and now she finds herself with a transfer order.
Today, it has been reported that the AAP government asked bureaucrat Ashish Joshi to discontinue as member-secretary of the Delhi Dialogue Commission (DDC), barely a month after his appointment.
The Indian Express claims that AAP leader Ashish Khetan asked Joshi to quit after he allegedly refused to appoint six AAP volunteers as coordinators of different task forces set up under the DDC.
Earlier Joshi was reported to have been humiliated when three AAP volunteers barged into his office in Chanakyapuri and had a verbal spat with him. Finally he was asked to quit as the party chose volunteers over bureaucrats.
Apart from showing vindictive nature of the party and its intolerance towards dissent, these incidents also show how AAP is actively encouraging participation of “volunteers” as government agents. This could again encourage vigilantism that was witnessed during the 49 days of AAP rule last year.