The Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) would project a prominent personality as its chief ministerial candidate in Uttarakhand. Many leaders including a cabinet minister and four members of legislative assembly (MLAs) of Uttarakhand would join the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP). These MLAs belong to both Congress and Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) but the AAP will not disclose the names as of now to avoid bypolls before Uttarakhand assembly elections of 2022.
The AAP leader and Uttarakhand in-charge of the party Dinesh Mohaniya made these disclosures in an online interaction with The Pioneer on Monday. He claimed that many MLAs of BJP are dissatisfied and disgruntled with their own government because a handful of bureaucrats are running the show in the state. On the question as to why some prominent leaders of other parties, especially BJP, would join the AAP, Mohaniya said, "The current State Government is being run by two bureaucrats sent by the Central Government. Even if MLAs approach the chief minister with some public welfare projects, the CM refers them to the bureaucrats. The people have chosen MLAs as their representatives and not the bureaucrats," stated Mohaniya who himself is an MLA from Sangam Vihar constituency in Delhi. Terming Uttarakhand CM Trivendra Singh Rawat as the weakest CM in India, Mohaniya said that even the CM fails to get the work done without the permission of bureaucrats here. Moreover, talking about AAP's scope in forthcoming Uttarakhand assembly elections, Mohaniya said that the assembly elections had always been bipolar in the State and people have mostly chosen either BJP or Congress because they never had a viable third option. "People elect the government from these parties on the basis of the disappointment and anger they hold against the last ruling party. Since there was no prominent option available to local residents, the public continued to vote for BJP and Congress party in Uttarakhand," said Mohaniya. However, he added that people do vote for capable new candidates in elections. "In the last elections, the independent candidates received 11 per cent votes which was the highest in the country. This shows that people do seek a better third option in the State considering which AAP decided to participate in the coming assembly elections," asserted Mohaniya.
The AAP leader claimed that the assembly elections in 2022 would be a battle between BJP and AAP in Uttarakhand and that the Congress party is nowhere in the picture. On the question of whether it is proper for the AAP to constantly compare Delhi's development with Uttarakhand considering the geographical, cultural and other differences, Mohaniya responded that there are more challenges in Uttarakhand than in Delhi but they can be tackled with the right intentions and hard work. "Uttarakhand has an educated population and sufficient resources but it is still going backwards in terms of development due to the government's lack of determination to improve the conditions here," said Mohaniya. He stated that Uttarakhand was carved out of Uttar Pradesh to improve the living standard of locals which has not been done in the last 20 years and the aspiration of the people here has remained unfulfilled. Mohaniya also added that no development work has been done in the education field by any government in the last two decades in the State. Meanwhile, talking about the ongoing ‘Uttarakhand Me Bhi Kejriwal’ campaign in the state which was flagged off by Delhi deputy chief minister Manish Sisodia, Mohaniya informed that the campaign is going well and the party is showing the development work in Uttarakhand in the last 20 years and Delhi in the last six years through 70 vans. The party will soon disclose all the details of the campaign, as per Mohaniya. He further said that the party has received an overwhelming response in Uttarakhand and thousands of people have joined the party so far which strengthens their belief of getting positive results in the assembly elections. When asked on what issues AAP will focus on if they come to power in the state, Mohaniya said that the party will focus mainly on the issues which the public has to face on a daily basis that prominently include health, employment, education, roads, water and electricity.