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Move Over Syriza & Podemos: Revolutionary Indian Political Party Sweeps New Delhi Elections

Submitted by Mike Krieger via Liberty Blitzkrieg blog,

Critics say that Kejriwal has been acting like a political novice by releasing a slew of allegations that may not come to much. Khurshid, for once, has said that Kejriwal was “an ant taking on the might of an elephant”.

 

Kejriwal accepts that survival in Indian politics against established political behemoths requires “strategic planning”, acknowledging that his “timing could have been planned better”.

 

While Kejriwal admits he is still learning, he believes that the truth will prevail. “Remember they may have survived for many decades in politics, but we too are formidable foes in pursuing truth,” he said.

 

Kejriwal objects to the fact that “power is vested in a political establishment in Delhi and in state capitals. It needs to be people-centric”. His use of street protests has earned him the respect of the middle class.

 

– From the November 4, 2012 Al Jazeera article: India’s ‘Assange’ crusades against corruption

More than two years ago, I published an article titled, Meet Arvind Kejriwal: “India’s Julian Assange,” which focused on the crusade for social justice of a man I had never heard of. It immediately seemed important to me as further evidence of the nascent global political awakening against corrupt politicians, large corporations and central banks. In the intervening years, we have seen the rise of Syriza in Greece, Podemos in Spain and even Bepe Grillo’s Five Star Movement in Italy. I hadn’t heard of Mr. Kejriwal again…until today.

While the establishment paid little attention to the man back in 2012, they are definitely paying attention now. Mr. Kejriwal has been attacking the entire establishment. For example, India has it’s own useless two party system, consisting of the Congress Party and the Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), and he’s gone after both of them with equal vigor. It is the BJP that is currently in power, and it was the BJP that Mr. Kejriwal’s Aam Admi Party, or Common Man’s Party, swept aside in local New Delhi elections.

AP reports that:

NEW DELHI (AP) — An upstart anti-corruption party won a smashing victory in elections to install a state government in India’s capital, dealing a huge blow to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s Hindu nationalist party.

 

While the results from last weekend’s elections will not have any bearing on the structure of the federal government, they sent a clear message to Modi that he was not invincible despite his party’s strong showing in state elections since it was swept to power last year. They were also an indication of voters’ frustration with endemic corruption.

 

Thousands of jubilant supporters of former tax collector Arvind Kejriwal and his Aam Admi Party, or Common Man’s Party, beat drums and danced in celebration after India’s Election Commission announced results Tuesday showing AAP’s overwhelming win.

 

“Such a big mandate is very scary, and we should live up to people’s expectations,” Kejriwal told his cheering supporters, who yelled “Five years, Kejriwal!” and showered rose petals on him outside the party’s headquarters in New Delhi.

 

Analysts said the scale of the defeat of Modi’s Bharatiya Janata Party was a wake-up call for the government.

 

Kejriwal has made opposition to widespread graft a centerpiece of his political work. During a brief stint as New Delhi’s leader last year, he promised tough action against police officers and officials caught accepting bribes, and encouraged ordinary people to carry out sting operations by filming officials accepting bribes.

 

With most votes counted, the Election Commission said the AAP won 66 out of 69 seats, with the BJP winning just three. The AAP was ahead in the one remaining constituency in the 70-seat assembly.

 

“Something dramatic has happened,” a dejected BJP spokesman Nalin Kohli said.

 

Kejriwal, a graduate from the prestigious Indian Institute of Technology and a former income tax official, became hugely popular during his 2013 election campaign, which honed in on corruption as the country’s greatest menace. While no party won an outright majority in that election, Kejriwal led a minority government for 49 days before resigning, leaving New Delhi under temporary federal government control.

 

“Democracy is winning today … because an honest man is standing for us,” 22-year-old student Pradeep Kumar said.

What is happening in India, in Europe, and what will eventually come to the U.S., represents a monumental political paradigm shift. When it’s over, the Fourth Turning will be complete, and the world won’t ever look quite the same again. It’s still very early days.

*  *  *

For related articles, see:

Brand New “Podemos” Political Party Surges Ahead of Incumbents in Spain as Catalans Prepare Informal Independence Vote

Incredible Video: Beppe Grillo Dissects the Financial System…in 1998

Meet Arvind Kejriwal: “India’s Julian Assange”