Internal democracy a farce in AAP? Mayank Gandhi says leaders targetting him for 'speaking truth'

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New Delhi, March 7: It seems, Aam Aadmi Party is facing worst crisis since it came into existence. Party is apparently on the verge of losing its hard earned political credibility after AAP leader Mayank Gandhi indicted Arvind Kejriwal for his autocratic style of functioning.

Read more-Decoding 'dirty politics of AAP': Why 'autocratic style' of functioning will prove fatal for party

Days after AAP leader stirred up the hornet's nest by alleging that Arvind kejriwal orchestrated Yogendra Yadav and Prashant Bhushan's exit from political Affair committees, Mayank Gandhi has thrown another salvo at party leaders.

Kejriwal camp targetting me: Gandhi

Mayank Gandhi on Saturday accused a "small group of party decision makers" of targeting him after he decried the decision to remove Prashant Bhushan and Yogendra Yadav from the Political Affairs Committee and said it could compel him to quit.

He also said that a concerted effort was being made on the social media to portray him as "anti-party" and "anti-AK" (Arvind Kejriwal). Gandhi said similar attempts were made to "humiliate" and oust Yadav and Bhushan from the party, but they overturned that plan by not quitting.

"A price may have to be paid. A small group of party decision makers in Delhi have already removed me from the informal BBM group. Attacks have begun against me from Ashish Khetan and others," he wrote in a blog defying a "gag order" imposed by the party.

The comments were made in a fresh blog by the AAP leader, who had abstained from voting in the National Executive meeting held on Wednesday.

Khetan had taken a jibe at Gandhi saying some people give interviews and write blogs while other work to create history. "Some people give television interviews all through the day, while some work for the progress of Delhi and country. Some people write blogs, while some people write history," Khetan had tweeted.

Gandhi said that some disgruntled members of the party were trying to potray him as anti-party and anti-Kejriwal. "Some dissatisfied members from Maharashtra have started giving interviews against me, some old cases are being re-opened. A concerted attempt is being made in social media to call me anti-party and anti-AK," he said.

The AAP leader from Maharashtra, who unsuccessfully contested Lok Sabha polls from North-west Mumbai, said the party may decide not to fight BMC elections or delay the decision for the same, adding that leadership of Maharashtra will be challenged and discredited by some individuals and media leaks will be made.

"More will come and I will be finally humiliated so much that I will quit. That was what was planned for YY and PB, but they overturned that plan by staying inside the party. Let me see if I can withstand the muck that will be thrown," Gandhi said. 

This has come to fore days after he had said that both the intellectuals face(Yogendra, Bhushan) were removed at the behest of Arvind Kejriwal. AAP leader Mayank Gandhi on Thursday defied Arvind Kejriwal's gag order and found fault with the manner in which the two leaders were voted out.

Read more-Decoding AAP rift: Know 'reasons' why Kejriwal and Yogendra camp were wrangling

Gandhi, who abstained from voting despite attending it has released details of how the two leaders were sacked. In his blog addressing party volunteers Gandhi said he was warned not to share the details of the meet and disciplinary action would be taken against him.

In his letter AAP leader from Maharashtra said, "On 26th Feb night when members of the NE went to meet him, Arvind conveyed that he will not be able to work as Convenor, if these two members were part of the PAC. That was the background of the NE on 4th March."

It is being said that Delhi Chief Minister like people with 'yes man' attitude and one who goes against his wish have to face dire consequences.

Here is the entire blog

2nd Note to Volunteers - again from the heart

Dear Volunteers, Supporters and donors,

Since the NE meeting, thousands of you have been asking about the difference between AAP and other parties. I want to tell the country that there is a huge difference and in the next few weeks, we volunteers shall demonstrate the same.

As a disciplined worker, I am generally non-confrontational and have never spoken a word against the movement nor party since the past four years outside the appropriate forum. But now is the time to take a stand. This is not to weaken the party nor our leadership, but to strengthen AAP and the principles that we have espoused.

It always has to be nation first, party next and individuals last. Party is only a vehicle to serve the nation and individuals, merely tools. The blogs are an exhortation to our volunteers, supporters and donors, not to disengage nor become negative, but to engage more with the party and force the leaders to truly build AAP into a party of our dreams.

A model party based on principles of participation, accountability, transparency, decentralization and integrity. A party that will force other political parties to follow our example and improve governance and political activity in the nation. AAP volunteers need to demonstrate how we are the real owners of the party and bring back the founding principles in the party.

If you had read my earlier blog carefully, it was my personal challenge to the gag order on informing the volunteers about this most important NE meeting. Thousands from all over the world were waiting - some crying, some sleepless and most worried.

A gag order was completely wrong. And hence I challenged the same. Having heard AK speak hundreds of times on transparency, participation, accountability and the need to stay away from arrogance, it has built a strong conscience in me. We must follow this higher consciousness, as a party. My blogs are not against any individual nor a challenge to the leadership. That is not how I function.

A volunteer identifies and considers AAP as part of their existence, but the walls built between them, the Committees and their non-transparent decisions have alienated them. Volunteers must propose that all NE meetings be video recorded and volunteers allowed to view the same.

All committee members are finally just representatives of volunteers, nothing more. Remember, video recording was one of our demands during the joint draft committee meetings on Janlokpal in 2011. All minutes of the meeting signed by all members in all committees in the country should be released on the next day of the meeting to volunteers and supporters.

I am hoping that the minutes of the 4th March NE is published soon. In my blog, I have given some glimpses of the happenings in the NE, but the complete minutes should be in the public domain. My description could have some shortcomings and may contain some probable bias, but the minutes will be authentic records. The volunteers should request for the same. This will strengthen the party and volunteers will become privy to the decisions taken.

After the 4th March meeting, it was my well thought out and conscious decision to write the blogs to uphold the higher principle of transparency. A price may have to be paid. A small group of party decision makers in Delhi have already removed me from the informal BBM group.

Attacks have begun against me from Ashish Khetan and others. Some dissatisfied members from Maharashtra have started giving interviews against me, some old cases are being re-opened. A concerted attempt is being made in social media to call me anti-party and anti-AK.

The party may decide not to fight BMC elections or delay the decision for the same, leadership of Maharashtra will be challenged and discredited by some individuals, media leaks will be made. More will come and I will be finally humiliated so much that I will quit.

 That was what was planned for YY and PB, but they overturned that plan by staying inside the party. Let me see if I can withstand the muck that will be thrown. But, my being in the party or not is immaterial, if by then, I am able to bring in some changes in the functioning of the party and empowered the volunteers.

In 2013, Iceland became the first country to crowd source its constitution by allowing citizen to create its constitution. Similarly, volunteers need to propose to the NE about processes and systems on subjects of inner party democracy, volunteer management and communication, reconstitution of PAC and NE, code of conduct for volunteers and leaders, gender justice, conflict resolution mechanisms, policy stands on various subjects etc.

In my next blog, I shall propose some concrete ideas on the principle of participation of volunteers in the working of the party and seek your ideas and suggestions.

Friends, it is time to participate in the party functioning in the best tradition of Swaraj. It should be non-confrontational, graceful, respectful to the leadership and constructive. We are all learning. 

Let me reiterate, this is not any rebellion, nor against our leadership, nor to seek personal attention. I truly believe that AK is the hope for the country and I have learnt almost everything from him.  I will continue to avoid going to the press.

Jai Hind!

Love
Mayank Gandhi

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