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‘Don’t want to be controlled by high command culture from Delhi’: Aam Aadmi Party Goa founder Elvis Gomes quits

The former convener further alleged that the party is not working in the interest of Goans, but instead decisions are being taken by people sitting in Delhi

The Aam Aadmi Party Goa unit’s founder Elvis Gomes quit the party Friday saying that the local unit is being remote-controlled by the Delhi lobby. Addressing a press conference, Gomes, who was the AAP’s chief ministerial face during the 2017 state Assembly elections, said he decided to quit the party after the Delhi unit started controlling the affairs of the party in Goa. “We don’t want to be controlled by the high command culture from Delhi,” he said alleging that the party has compromised on its core principles.

The former convener further alleged that the party is not working in the interest of Goans, but instead, decisions are being taken by people sitting in Delhi.

The main group of the AAP’s Goa unit, which was working for the upcoming 2022 state Assembly elections, was completely sidelined, he claimed. “It’s not a decision taken in haste. It’s a well thought out decision over the past two months. AAP core team members, who had worked hard to build the party for the past four years have resigned, said Gomes.

People who joined AAP have been disillusioned

Gomes said after the last Delhi election, a team from Delhi was camping in Goa, which doubted the autonomy of the Goa unit. We feel that for running a party, autonomy should be given to the regional units. We were told that ‘Swaraj’ is the voice of the people, but there is no ‘Swaraj’ in getting instructions,” said Gomez told reporters.

“When there was a doubt whether Goa unit and Goans had the freedom to take up issues or it was directed by somebody from outside, we resigned from our posts,” he said, adding that people who had joined AAP with high hopes for a new political system have been disillusioned.

Aam Aadmi Party has deviated from its ideologies, claims Gomes

Adding that the party has lately deviated from its ideologies. Gomes cautioned those who want to continue working for the Aam Aadmi Party.

Gomes said he would contest the next assembly elections in 2022 from Cuncolim constituency but declined to confirm which party he would join.

“We were influenced by the India Against Corruption movement, but now they are taking in people facing criminal charges. The people who joined voluntarily in 2016 were all honest people. They came to the party for the message of no corruption, no criminalisation, and no communalisation,” he stated.

Gomes had quit the Goa administration as senior scale office in October 2016 to take over as AAP’s state convener but he stepped down from his post as the convenor of the party’s state unit in September.

Beside Elvis Gomes, several other core party members of the Goa unit have also quit the party for similar reasons. Besides Gomes, other AAP functionaries who resigned from the primary membership of the party include Sidharth Karapurkar, the party’s convener on environment, former Nuvem constituency coordinator Ramiro Mascarenhas, Rodney Almeida, Sudin Mauzo, Ilma Dias, Rosario Fernandes (Benaulim).

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