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BJP calls Kejriwal a terrorist, he says he’s Delhi’s bhai & beta: who’s more convincing?

Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal hit back at BJP leader Parvesh Verma for calling him a "terrorist", saying he had worked like the son and brother of Delhi residents in the past five years.

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Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal hit back at BJP leader Parvesh Verma for calling him a “terrorist”. Kejriwal said he had worked like the son and brother of Delhi residents in past five years. Verma is facing a probe by the ECI for saying Shaheen Bagh protesters “will enter people’s homes” and “rape and kill”.

ThePrint asks: BJP calls Kejriwal a terrorist, he says he’s Delhi’s bhai & beta: who’s more convincing?

Kejriwal isn’t a decent man. When insults are being hurled at him, he is playing the victim card

Shazia Ilmi
BJP leader

Having once been part of the AAP, I know Delhi CM Arvind Kejriwal is communal. He has hiked salaries of imams just before Lok Sabha election and supported the protest at Shaheen Bagh. Kejriwal has been rightly termed an ‘urban Naxal’. In 2014, he had threatened to disrupt Republic Day parade. In fact, that was one of the reasons I left AAP.

Kejriwal has a long history of creating disruptions, including accusing Prime Minister Narendra Modi of using Delhi Police to have him killed. Now, when insults are being hurled at him, he is playing the victim card. Also, Kejriwal is not a son of Delhi. In the past, he tried his hands in Uttar Pradesh and Goa but failed miserably.

I have reasons to believe that he is a thug who will stop at nothing. In 2018, he and AAP supporters got out on bail after being named an accused in the assault of Delhi chief secretary Anshu Prakash. It is clear that Kejriwal is not a decent man with constitutional values.

If Parvesh Kumar called Kejriwal a terrorist, it probably stemmed from the fact that AAP’s Okhla candidate, Amanatullah Khan, allowed Sharjeel Imam, who has now been booked for sedition, to stand with him at rallies and created ruckus during Imam’s arrest.

BJP only knows how to play divisive politics, but AAP has stumped them this time around

Somnath Bharti
Lawyer, AAP leader

BJP has lost the plot as far as the Delhi polls are concerned, and now it is expressing its frustration by name-calling. People of Delhi are the direct beneficiaries of Arvind Kejriwal’s governance and all the policies of the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) focus on bettering access to education, healthcare, electricity, etc. The BJP, however, has nothing positive to say to the people of Delhi, which has left their campaign disorganised without an agenda. Nothing has changed since 2015 when BJP put out advertisements attacking Kejriwal’s caste, saying he is “uppadravi gotra”.

The BJP knows the victory is with AAP. It is sure to lose its entire political base in Delhi. The party fails to comprehend the ‘new’ politics put forth by AAP, in which voters are responding more to a campaign on development, than to one based on religion.

The BJP only knows how to play divisive politics, but AAP has stumped them this time around. One may ask that if AAP preaches unity for all in Delhi, then why hasn’t Kejriwal visited JNU or Shaheen Bagh? This is because it is the BJP that is responsible for the situation in these places and the onus to address them lies with it.


BJP’s bid to make political gains by maligning Kejriwal won’t be successful

Santosh Desai
Columnist and author

It certainly is true that the BJP has effectively managed to appropriate the nationalist platform for itself and is able to brand it’s opponents as being ‘anti-national’ seemingly at will. With the help of its main ally, the television media, this is a tactic that it has used repeatedly and with some success.

In Kejriwal’s case, however, this gambit is not likely to be as successful. For one, people of a small city-state like Delhi have a high degree of familiarity about their CM and are likely to form their opinion on the basis of their own experience. On his part, Kejriwal has been careful particularly in the latter part of his tenure to steer clear of potentially contentious ideological stances, and focus his government’s energies on issues concerning the everyday lives of Delhi’s residents. This has been widely acknowledged and this is also what his campaign has exclusively focused on.

While attaching the ‘terrorist’ label to Kejriwal may not be that easy, the BJP, might succeed in instilling fear among a section of the electorate using Shaheen Bagh as a wedge issue. This might dent some of the advantages that Kejriwal seems to be currently enjoying in the Delhi electoral race.

But overall, as things stand, Kejriwal’s actions for the Delhi people will speak louder than the BJP’s words.

Delhi won’t forget how Kejriwal called PM Modi a coward and a psychopath

Advaita Kala | TwitterAdvaita Kala
Author, screenwriter and columnist

Arvind Kejriwal has worked to recreate his image along the lines of exposure, but Delhi’s public won’t ever forget how he called the Prime Minister a coward and a psychopath. Those comments were an insult to the office of the prime minister. While I was researching for a column in 2018, I counted over 56 direct abuses hurled at Prime Minister Modi. Modi is no doubt the biggest recipient of abuses in the country since entering office. Kejriwal can’t cry foul when he himself has committed verbal offenses.

People of Delhi are politically aware. Kejriwal’s inflammatory comments of the past won’t just fade away. AAP also recently mocked Manoj Tiwari for his association with Bhojpuri cinema — a much-loved aspect and popular expression of Bhojpuri society. That was an offence to not just Tiwari but an entire community.

I think the bigger problem is the deterioration of political discourse in India and all political parties have been contributors to it. It’s a discourse circus now. Who can say that Kejriwal, who appears to be the victim here, won’t make inflammatory remarks in the future?

Politicians are perpetuating a toxic discourse cycle and the public, which would previously be outraged by such remarks, has gradually become less sensitive about them. Only sheer political will can improve the level of discourse in our country.

BJP’s name-calling at Arvind Kejriwal shows its campaign in Delhi is floundering

Shivam Vij
Contributing editor, ThePrint

In the 2015 Delhi assembly elections, prime minister Narendra Modi had said Arvind Kejriwal was an anarchist who should join Naxals. The Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) ended up winning only 3 seats that election, Kejriwal’s AAP won the rest 67.

History seems to be repeating itself. The BJP is calling Kejriwal a terrorist now. Kejriwal has played martyr over being called Naxal in 2015, and is similarly playing martyr over being called a terrorist in 2020. He has only worked for Delhi like a son of the people, he says.

Kejriwal is not using any big words. Yet, by calling himself a son of the people, he is asking the people: is your son a terrorist?

There is little doubt that the BJP’s personal attacks on Kejriwal are making the BJP sound over the top. By calling Kejriwal a terrorist the BJP sounds just like Kejriwal sounded around 2016 when he would call Modi names day in and day out.

Indian voters prefer positive campaigning. That is how Modi won in 2014 or Kejriwal in 2015. Even the 2019 Lok Sabha election campaign of BJP was more about Modi’s achievements (Balakot, LPG, housing etc).

The BJP’s name-calling at Kejriwal does not cover up the fact that its campaign in Delhi is floundering with no worthy promises, no great achievements, and no credible CM face.

Also read: A toned-down Kejriwal or aggressive Modi-Shah: who has wider appeal in Delhi elections?

By Pia Krishnankutty, journalist with ThePrint

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  1. Those who have soft corner or support indirectly those who are indulging in anti India activities are no less than terrorists as terrorism won’t survive without their moral and ground support. Kejriwal would take support from any terrorist if it can win him elections.

  2. Delhi is a cosmopolitan, world class city ( except for poor air quality in winter, a problem it shares with many other cities ). The issues in this election are city specific. With the three municipal corporations with it, across terms, BJP should have had a lot of good work to showcase. Apart from that, worthwhile achievements at national / international level, would also be appreciated by the city’s residents. So it does seem odd that nothing positive is on offer at either local or national level. With no serious CM contender, the burden is falling on the top leadership. A mood of dark negativity may not hold up against a state government that has performed well and is asking for a second term based entirely on its performance. In fact, if AAP does exceedingly well, that would be a decisive input for the ruling party to reorient both its politics and its governance priorities.

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