Saturday, June 14, 2014

Will Sri Sri be able to save AAP?

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Spiritual guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar
With an aim to revive its original movement, 55 members of the Aam Aadmi Party have turned to the spiritual guru. Vicky Nanjappa reports      
Is it the end of road for the Aam Aadmi Party? With fifty-five members contemplating to quit the party, it is struggling to keep itself afloat.   
A group of desperate AAP members have now turned to spiritual guru Sri Sri Ravi Shankar to help the party overcome the exodus crisis. They gather regularly at the Art of Living centre in Bangalore, where they hold consultations with the guru.
At the ‘Save AAP’ initiative, which started on Friday, a host of issues were discussed. A major problem was the dictatorial nature of the central leadership. AAP members urged Sri Sri to have a word with its top leaders and anti-corruption crusader Anna Hazare to bring the party back on track.   

A poster of Aam Aadmi Party leader Arvind Kejriwal
The 55 rebels are expecting members from other units to join them. Justice Santosh Hegde, who was part of the Anna Hazare movement, is likely to back them, say insiders.
The ‘Save AAP’ campaign is a spearheaded by expelled AAP member Ashwin‎I Upadhyaya. “The discussions are about the failure of the party in the elections and also how to take it forward. We want to bring the old team back,” he said.
But not everybody is convinced. “It is a move by the Rashtriya Swayamsevak Sangh to split the party. Why else would they gather at the Art of Living,” a member of AAP Bangalore unit

Rebel AAP members want Sri Sri to convince Anna Hazare to bring the party back on track
Rubbishing the allegations, Upadhyaya said, “The venue cannot be the reason for the RSS to be involved. If you recollect, when the Anna Hazare movement commenced a lot of members from Art of Living had taken part. We want to revive the original movement.”
The ‘Save AAP’ campaign is expected to gain more steam in the days to come. Currently, most of its members are from the party’s Karnataka and Tamil Nadu units. “There are a good number who are very upset with the manner in which the party is functioning,” an AAP member said.
However, Prithvi Reddy, the head of the AAP in Karnataka, said that there was no problem within the party. “As per my information, only two from Karnataka were part of this campaign. And those who have initiated this movement are self-styled leaders. I would not read much into it,” he insisted.

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