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Sit-in fizzles out

Editorial |

Ever one to talk big, Arvind Kejriwal was compelled to dub a “small win” his nine-day nonsense at Raj Niwas. Few others would even concede his small claim, for his sit-in fizzled out without any kind of apology from the senior officials of the Delhi government, the Lieutenant-Governor and the Prime Minister ~ who had once slammed him as a mere mosquito ~ who virtually ignored his pointless protest. If there was any kind of reconciliatory move it was made by the chief minister: his assuring officials of their safety was self-incriminating, and bolsters the contention of the chief secretary that he was roughed up at a meeting in Kejriwal’s house. For all the claims that Kejriwal and his very vocal but shallow supporters may be making, they have little to show for a dharna that attracted some attention only when an equally-maverick Mamata Banerjee tried to hijack his action and make it a rallying point for a non-Congress “third front”.

Funny, after availing of a couple of “photo-ops” Mamata, Chandrababu & Co carried their action no farther than requesting prime ministerial intervention ~ for which they were snubbed by a non-response. HD Kumaraswamy tried to show he not was tied to the Congress’ petticoat-hem, but that has not eased his difficulties in Bengaluru. Mamata will have to seek a more substantial focal point to galvanise an anti-BJP alliance, and Dinesh Trivedi’s sermon on a “national” TV channel betrayed distinct ignorance of the core issue: trying to extrapolate the Kejriwal-Anil Baijal row into a tirade against BJP-appointed Governors just did not work. Yes, Kejriwal did con a couple of TV anchors into asking if the Congress had missed the “opposition unity” bus by not supporting the protest, they were soon cut adrift by their own over-simplification of political realities. Opposition unity is made of sterner stuff.

Without in any way batting for the Prime Minister, Lieutenant-Governor, BJP or Congress, it would be safe to conclude that this time around the AAP came a cropper, and Kejriwal exited Raj Niwas before the Delhi High Court gave effect to its scathing observations. It is high time that the chief minister enables the efficiency of his administration to do the talking rather than trying to wriggle out of its incompetence by pointing accusing fingers. Or trying to explain his inadequacies by the fact that the Delhi government has only limited powers ~ was he not aware of that when he contested elections? He continues with his tirade against the union government, keeps having to apologise for slanderous comments. The NCT cannot be ruled from the streets, and the people are aware that the municipal corporations wield as much clout as the Old Secretariat/Players Building. And have proved that by not electing the AAP to even one of three corporations.