Congress and AAP has a self defeating relationship – Arun Jaitley Leader of Opposition (Rajya Sabha)
After an electoral contest in Delhi in December, 2013 Assembly elections, the AAP and the Congress have a cozy relationship. The Congress Party announced an unconditional support to AAP. Its State leaders were willing to issue statements against the AAP but unwilling to strike. The AAP was willing to register an FIR against Smt. Sheila Dikshit and other Congress leaders. The police organization where the FIR was registered was without jurisdiction. The Congress conventionally had a support of anti-BJP section of the intelligentsia. This section now had pinned its hopes on AAP as a possible contender for challenging Shri Narendra Modi.
During the last few weeks, the AAP has started a campaign at the national level. The entire focus of the campaign is against BJP and Shri Narendra Modi. Its leaders Shri Arvind Kejriwal declared that “Communalism is more dangerous than corruption”. This was a clear indication for his preference for the Congress and animus against the BJP. The entire thrust of his speeches whether at Delhi, UP or Gujarat has been on how to stop Narendra Modi. The AAP Party and its leadership does not speak against the dynasty. It does not speak on the Central Government being weak on national security; it does not give data on how the national economy has suffered under the Congress. There is no criticism of the manner in which the coal blocks were allocated or the 2G spectrum was allotted. There is not even a criticism of Congress having aligned with a convicted Lalu Prasad Yadav, AAP has softened the attack on the Congress and is going hard against the BJP. This is the Congress-AAP strategy.
The Congress meanwhile is running an insipid campaign. Its leadership is lackluster. Its campaign is on the backfoot. The entire focus of the media debate is the political struggle between the BJP and the AAP. Obviously, Congress has a vote bank much bigger than AAP. AAP is only struggling to make its presence felt. It may not even be a spoiler. It tactics target maximum media publicity. Its presence in the media is higher than congress. Amongst a particular section it has started occupying media space much higher than the Congress.
Even though the Congress may feel that the AAP is doing what the Congress is failing to do, it has ended up scoring a self-goal. The BJP remains a comfortable front runner. It occupies the non-Congress space. More and more non-Congress groups are joining the BJP. Whatever media and vote space the AAP gains, it eats into the non-BJP space. There are multiple players vying for the non-BJP space. The Congress, AAP, Left, BSP and the SP are the principal contenders for this space. AAP, by attempting to occupy non-BJP space, hurts the other non-BJP players more. The Congress is encouraging the AAP but it is today stamping on the Congress’s foot. The BJP constituency is intact and expanding. The Congress and AAP have a cozy relationship, but by dividing the non-BJP space, they will develop a self defeating relationship.