arvind-manishFollowing a landslide victory of 67 seats of the 70 assembly seats in the Delhi Government, Arvind Kejriwal took the oath of office on Saturday, the 14th February, 2015 at 12:15’ PM IST at the Ramlila Grounds that accommodates more than 100,000 people. Unlike all other politicians who have followed the old British system of swearing-in at the Governor or President house (Rastrapati Bhavan), Kejriwal has, time and again, followed the American system of public oath-taking ceremony. Somewhere deep in his heart he seems to be a true democrat and connects with the people at large.

The Oath

12.10 Arvind Kejriwal makes his way to the stage at Ramlila Maidan to be sworn in as Delhi Chief Minister.
12.12 The national anthem plays at Ramlila Maidan as the swearing-in ceremony begins.
12.15 Arvind Kejriwal takes oath as Delhi’s Chief Minister, administered by Lieutenant Governor Najeeb Jung. He is the eighth Chief Minister. Chief Secretary D.M. Spolia announces that the President appoints Arvind Kejriwal as Delhi Chief Minister.
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12.22
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Manish Sisodia takes oath of office
Asim Ahmed Khan takes the oath of office.
Sandeep Kumar takes oath of office
Satyendra Jain takes the oath of office
Gopal Rai takes the oath of office.
Jitender Singh Tomar takes the oath of office.

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All the ‘seven samurai’ of the AAP took oath in Taurus Lagna which is considered extremely auspicious. Further, Arvind Kejriwal was sworn in in Aries Navāṁśa Lagna which is technically, vyayāṁśa; Manish Sisodia, Asim Ahmed Khan, Sandeep Kumar, Satyendra Jain and Gopal Rai took the oath in vargottama Taurus navāṁśa lagna; Jitender Singh Tomar took oath in dhanāṁśa Gemini navāṁśa lagna.

Starting Speech

The speech of the chief executive at the start sets the tone for the government and spells out its attitudes, aspirations and promises. After thanking the crowd for giving Delhi an ‘Aam Aadmi’ (abbr. AAP) Government, Kejriwal stated that “People from everywhere, all religions, castes, rich and poor, voted for us” clearly indicating a strong Gandhian theme of bring people of all castes, creeds and religions together. It is becoming all the more evident that with the support of the strong Gandhian Anna Hazare, Arvind Kejriwal has taken the “Gandhi” mantle from the Congress Party.

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For readers who are unaware, the Congress was largely led by Mahatma Gandhi to give independence to India. Since the Mahatma had no political aspirations, this mantle was inherited by his śiṣya (ardent student and follower) Jawaharlal Nehru. Nehru’s daughter Indira carried the Gandhi mantle when she married Feroze Gandhi who was adopted by the Mahatma and started her political leadership as Prime Minister with the slogan “garibi hatao” (eradicate poverty). This mantle passed on to her son Rajiv Gandhi and later to her daughter-in-law Sonia Gandhi. However, for some reason people have been feeling that the Manmohan Singh government was losing this ‘Gandhi’ mantle, especially when the staunch Gandhian Anna Hazare started a crusade to introduce ‘Lokpal’ i.e. grassroots level self-governance which was an ancient system in India which always had panchayat (five leaders of village) to govern themselves by their own social norms. People felt that the Manmohan Singh government had seriously deviated from the directive principles of state policy (Gandhian principles) enshrined in our constitution. Arvind Kejriwal was one of the members of this crusade of Anna Hazare. However he realised that the old “petition system” is not going to get them anywhere and started the “Aam Aadmi Party” (literally Common Man Party). Previously in 2013, Anna Hazare had not liked this political adventurism of Kejriwal and felt that Manmohan Singh would deliver on his promise for having Lokpal and Lokayukta which is the only real means to contain corruption in this country. Manmohan Singh failed to deliver and a storm brewed in this country, a storm that ousted the Congress and brought the BJP to the center stage of India. Now when Anna Hazare supported Arvind Kejriwal, the AAP was seen as the “true followers” of Mahatma Gandhi. In many ways this election is “very dangerous” for the Congress Party as it shows that the Gandhi mantle has gone from them to the AAP. It is as if AAP is moving towards becoming the new centre-left party replacing the Congress while the BJP continues as the centre-right party.

Kejriwal’s determination is clearly indicated by the swearing-in chart with the unflinching Taurus Lagna and Lagneśa Venus in tenth bhāva in siddhi-yoga with Sun in digbala. There is much more which we shall examine in a future article. Keeping in lines with the promises made during the elections, Kejriwal reiterated the following directives.

  1. Only Delhi: “Delhi’s people have given us their love and trust. AAP became arrogant and fought Lok Sabha elections from other States and was taught a lesson. I’m staying in Delhi for 5 years to work for the city” … is he going to miss the boat? Indications are that with Anna Hazare, Kejriwal definitely has the Gandhi mantle. If his vision stops him at Delhi alone, then AAP will miss the opportunity to become an All-India party replacing the Congress (I).
  2. Anti-Corruption Drive: “This time, we are confident that we can remove corruption from Delhi in five years” … this is the most important statement that the people wanted to hear. The anti-corruption line is back as Kejriwal tells people to record anyone asking for a bribe, and promises to restart the anti-corruption phone line. We wonder as to why anybody in their right senses would ever have stopped this anti-corruption phone line and expect people to appreciate that.
  3. Statehood for Delhi-NCR: Kejriwal said, “I met the Prime Minister and told him that we want constructive cooperation with the Centre. For a long time, the BJP has been promising statehood for Delhi, but they haven’t been able to get the chance. I have told the Prime Minister that this is the best time and opportunity to do so.” Now, this is going to be a bit troublesome as the 4th lord Sun in the 10th house does show an important direction of giving complete statehood to city but it is debilitated in the navāṁśa showing that it is not going to be an easy matter.
  4. Love for all: Kejriwal sang his favourite song, “Insaan ka insaan se ho bhai-chara” and stated “We see the 3 BJP MLAs as our MLAs. We will work for the entire city. Kiran Bedi is like my older sister. We will take help from her too. Ajay Maken has a long experience as a lawmaker. We will take his guidance too”. Āruḍha of the sixth bhāva (śatrupada) shows attitude towards enemies and in the swearing-in chart A6 is in Gemini, a mercurial sign. Mercury is the planet which preaches ahimsa, the path of non-violence and vegetarianism. Kejriwal is genuine and true to his heart and will not consider anyone an enemy – he seems to be following this Gandhian principle to the letter.

crowd1In addition to all that, he added a few lines to highlight sentiments about recent incidents of crime in the city. Before finishing, the ‘ex-income tax officer’ inside him stated that businessmen will not have to pay any unfair dues and he will make sure they are not harassed by officials – provided that they pay their taxes. Thereafter followed propaganda statements like ending the ‘red-light’ culture and slogan shouting evoking popular sentiments including wishing the best of luck to the Indian Cricket team.

Updates

AAP expels Yogendra Yadav, Prashant Bhushan

YADAV_2380169fThe Hindu reports
Ahead of their expulsion both Mr. Bhushan and Mr. Yadav had sent scathing responses to the showcause notices issued to them by the party’s national disciplinary committee.
AAP Viewpoint: “The party’s national disciplinary committee has taken a decision to expel Prashant Bhusan, Yogendra Yadav, Anand Kumar and Ajit Jha. They were expelled for gross indiscipline, anti-party activities and violation of code of conduct of the party,” said party spokesperson Deepak Bajpai.
Yogendra Yadav Statement
“The kangaroo trials, expulsions, witch-hunts, character assassination, rumour campaigns and emotional theatre to justify such macabre acts — all this is so true of the Stalinist regime,” Mr. Yadav said in his reply.
Mr. Bhushan Statement
Mr. Bhushan also hit back against the disciplinary committee, accusing its members Pankaj Gupta of accepting donations from dubious companies and Ashish Khetan of doing a “paid news” story, favouring a company. He also said that the panel, which he had headed until last month, was reconstituted illegally. “I am not aware who has constituted this National Disciplinary Committee,” ” he said.


21 April, 2015 Is India’s Aam Admi Party no place for intellectuals?

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Soutik Biswas Delhi correspondent of BBC reports
I don’t know whether Arvind Kejriwal, leader of India’s anti-corruption Aam Admi Party (AAP), would agree with Mr Havel. But many believe that Monday’s midnight expulsion of four senior members of the party, including founder members Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan, marks the retreat of “intellectual politics” and dissent in a party which rode to power in the capital, Delhi, promising an invigorating narrative of corruption-free, democratic politics.
Mr Yadav is a leading psephologist and political scientist, while Mr Bhushan is a well-respected lawyer. Anand Kumar, another senior member who was also expelled, is a sociologist. They believe that a cult of personality has grown around Mr Kejriwal, and according to Mr Bhushan, the “dreams of a movement have been shattered by a small coterie and a dictator”.
Arun Kumar, a Delhi-based economist and a party supporter, regrets that the “intellectual climate and democratic culture on which the party was founded is gradually diminishing. It seems real intellectuals are posing insecurity to Arvind Kejriwal”.