NEW DELHI: An ugly fight within the top leadership of the Aam Aadmi Party surfaced on June 5 with the emergence of a letter, purportedly from founder member Manish Sisodia, to senior leader Yogendra Yadav, accusing the latter of fomenting factional fights within the party and gunning for AAP chief Arvind Kejriwal. When contacted, Yadav did not deny the existence of the letter. He merely said he would not comment on it.
Sisodia could not be contacted despite repeated attempts. The letter seems to make plain the growing bad blood in the top AAP leadership. Sisodia has not only accused Yadav of fueling factionalism and targeting Kejriwal, he has charged him with misleading the leadership on AAP’s prospects in Haryana and goading it into a disastrous Lok Sabha contest. Sisodia refers to an ongoing spat between Yadav and Navin Jaihind, another senior party member who has been working with the former in Haryana, as the main reason for writing the letter.
“You have made the fight public and because it is not being handled in the way you would like, you are trying to draw Kejriwal into it. In fact, you have accused Kejriwal of not listening to the parliamentary affairs committee and acting like a party supremo. Your issues with Jaihind need to be sorted out but instead, you have made this fight public and tried to draw Kejriwal into it,” he says. The letter also reveals that Yadav ignored majority opinion in the PAC and insisted on contesting the Lok Sabha elections from Gurgaon. Sisodia has also said Kejriwal was firmly against contesting from so many seats in the LS elections but went ahead on Yadav’s persuasion.
“Kejriwal wanted to focus on Delhi politics for some years. However, you and some other members were in favour of contesting from across India. The result is in front of us,” says the letter. Sisodia has also challenged Yadav on his accusations against Kejriwal. “After our resignation from Delhi government, you got a survey carried out in Haryana in which AAP was getting 23% votes.
But when under your leadership we managed to get only 3% votes a month and a half later, the party wants to know what happened. Instead of answering questions, you are trying to deflect attention to Kejriwal by accusing him of acting like a supremo,” Sisodia said. The letter ends with Sisodia accusing Yadav of not attending party meetings but sending emails instead. “What are you trying to achieve through these emails,” he has asked. “Are you trying to finish the party? Are you trying to win this fight against Jaihind or are you trying to finish Kejriwal?