Aam Aadmi Party to Field 198 Candidates in Next BBMP Polls
With the parliament elections behind them in the state, Aam Admi Party (AAP) now has its eyes set on the Bruhat Bangalore Mahanagara Palike (BBMP) elections scheduled in 2015. The party is likely to field candidates from all 198 wards.
Even while campaigning for party candidates in all three parliamentary segments in the state capital, the party started ground work for the civic body elections.
AAP national executive member Prithvi Reddy told Express that they have launched the Nanna Hana Nanage Beku Lekka (I want my money to be accounted for) initiative. Through this, AAP is planning to appoint shadow councillors in each ward.
“These people will get information on funds being utilised and the details will be passed onto residents of the particular ward. We shall start this in the next couple of days and are not waiting for the BBMP election,” he said. This will be a ward watch initiative and be implemented in all 198 wards.
According to Reddy, participation in the initiative will be monitored and the party will field pro-active people in the BBMP election.
“Corporation election is the ideal place to start a political career. Unfortunately, AAP in Karnakata got to face the LS elections. But we gained experience and support. We will ready our candidates in the next three to six months in all 198 wards,” he said.
From LS to BBMP
Mahantesh Arali, AAP volunteer, said during the election campaign, party members received good support from the public. “People have seen the BJP and the Congress in the BBMP. It is middle-class families which will be affected because of corruption in the BBMP, especially in town planning, road and other services,” he said. During canvassing, people came up voluntarily and said they will support AAP candidates if they contest in the BBMP elections, he added.
A senior BJP councillor said if Narendra Modi becomes the PM, BJP candidates can seek votes in his name in the BBMP polls. “BJP did not fair well in the last five years in BBMP. AAP will not win a majority in the BBMP but they may win a few seats,” he said.
The Road Ahead
Speaking to Express, T V Mohandas Pai, vice-president of Bangalore Political Action Committee (B.PAC), welcomed AAP’s plan for the BBMP. “We need better grass-root politicians who can work for Bangalore. Many councillors are into real estate mafia,” he said.
Political analyst Prof Sandeep Shastri said AAP should have initially focused on smaller cities or smaller bodies like the BBMP where the chances of success are more when compared to general elections. “ The BBMP election will be ideal for AAP which focuses on corruption and city administration,” he said.
However, some others beg to differ. Ashwin Kumar, a political analyst, said AAP candidates contesting the BBMP election will not make much difference. “In a city like Bangalore where voter turnout is 55 per cent and where four parties including AAP contested, if there is to be any impact, there should be an increase in the number of voters,” he said. The AAP should win at least 25-30 seats to make an impact in the BBMP, he insisted.