Insight Delhi

#Kejriwal’s Dilemma

As elections in the National Capital Territory are approaching, #Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal has been coming out with statements indicating support for the Narendra Modi –Amit Shah led Union Government on national issues.

A few days back, he supported the BJP led Central Government’s decision to dilute #Article 370 governing #Jammu and Kashmir’s special status and bifurcation of the state into two union territories. Most other opposition parties had either opposed the move or denounced the way in which it had been carried out. Of course, there were dissenting voices among several parties including the Congress on the approach to the issue of revocation of the special status of Jammu and Kashmir.

In the latest move, Arvind Kejriwal has now expressed confidence that the Narendra Modi dispensation would be able to tackle effectively the spectre of #recession facing the country.

The question arises why Arvind Kejriwal is adopting this approach now, just a few months after making a prolonged effort to enter into an alliance with the Congress for the Lok Sabha elections earlier this year. It was clear at the time that though there was no love lost between the Congress and  the Aam Aadmi Party, AAP, Arvind Kejriwal thought that an alliance or seat sharing deal with the Congress for the seven Lok Sabha seats from Delhi will help beat the challenge from the BJP. Ultimately, no arrangement could be worked out between the Congress and the Aam Aadmi Party, and fighting separately, the two parties drew a blank in the Lok Sabha elections in Delhi. The BJP was able to retain all seven seats in the National Capital Territory.

But everything is not lost for Arvind Kejriwal and his party. The #dynamics in Assembly elections are sometimes different from those in the national elections. This has been seen repeatedly over the past decades and even during the Lok Sabha elections this year.

In Delhi itself, the BJP had won all seven Lok Sabha seats in 2014. But the very next year, that is 2015, the party could win only three of the total 70 seats in the Delhi Assembly while the remaining 67 were bagged by Arvind Kejriwal’s Aam Aadmi Party.

It looks like that there is going to be a three cornered fight in the Assembly elections in Delhi in the next few months.

Arvind Kejriwal’s government has done good work in Delhi in so far as water supply and electricity are concerned. What the consumer has to pay for these services has been kept under control. But the government’s record in maintenance of roads and adequate transport infrastructure has been dismal.

Arvind Kejriwal’s statements indicating support for the Narendra Modi government on national issues have to be seen in this context. There may be more such goings on in the coming  months before the picture becomes clear.