Kejriwal needs different approach to win hearts and votes

October 11, 2012

The Arvind Kejriwal-Robert Vadra faceoff has finally reached the place where it should be — in court instead of in the press.

An activist named Nutan Thakur filed a public interest litigation (PIL) in the Allahabad High Court on Oct. 9, and it has now been admitted. The government must respond within three weeks. Thakur wants the court to explore allegations by social activist Kejriwal that Vadra, son-in-law of Congress Party chief Sonia Gandhi, has been involved in shady land deals.

Perhaps court is the best venue for trying to find out if there is any less-than-aboveboard connection between Vadra, real estate firm DLF and the Haryana government, despite the lonely, but rewarding work of good investigative journalists.

But, there is a question that continues to bother me: why did the budding politician Kejriwal not go to court himself if he and his team had substantial allegations to make against Vadra? If publicity were the reason, he would have started his campaign on a weak note.

Kejriwal is promoting nothing but the concept of “media trial” — a cynical but sometimes effective circus that involves leaders, would-be leaders and various experts debating and levelling charges against each other in press conferences and during prime-time news hours. Whether justice gets done is an open question, but there is no question that it’s good for ratings and that people get their entertainment.

As a newly turned politician, Kejriwal could set an example for the younger generation to enter
politics to improve the system. If he is one day elected to power, I wonder if he will continue to seek justice in a similar fashion in the world’s largest democracy.

There is little doubt that the judiciary and the regulatory systems will soon lose relevance in this
country if every political leader starts restoring disconnected electricity connections manually, like Kejriwal did, and protests in the streets to seek attention.

Kejriwal, who was anti-politics when he started his anti-corruption campaign with Anna Hazare, has noble thoughts. He is tired of corruption, like we all are, and wants to reform politics in India.

While the thought is noble, there is a beautiful quote in the Bhagavad Gita which he can refer to before he makes his next promised expose on Oct. 16 — it’s the journey, not the outcome that matters.

If Kejriwal adopts a different way of doing things, he can surely succeed. For now, his style looks no different than that of any other politician.

(You can follow Aditya on Twitter at @adityayk)


We welcome comments that advance the story through relevant opinion, anecdotes, links and data. If you see a comment that you believe is irrelevant or inappropriate, you can flag it to our editors by using the report abuse links. Views expressed in the comments do not represent those of Reuters. For more information on our comment policy, see

Seems like the author has so much trust on our judicial system. its been decades that there is no decision on Bhopal Gas trajedy, Bofors scam. Very little treatment politicians got in cases like 2G , CWG. We don’t need another case but we need a change in system and that will come with public awareness only. Great Going Mr Kejriwal , You are doing right and the right way.

Posted by vivekvermani | Report as abusive

Kejriwal has already won hearts of people. By the way he does not need suggestions from news papers like you who are very eager to serve Govt to get Advt. just like a dog serves his masters for bone.Take my words- Kejriwal is next PM of India.

Posted by sudhir_patil | Report as abusive

Rightly said.It seems AK wants to be in limelight and coming up with his renewed allegations but failing to provide anything.He came up with some papers alleging all 15 ministers are corrupt but failed to challenge any of them in the court if it’s true. He alleged pranab mukherjee was corrupt and said he wouldn’t let him become president. If he is really true, why is he not challenging any of them in the court.Now he is challenging khurshid and vadra.he is taking ride the people nowadays but failing prove any of his allegations true. It seems very silly and looks like he wants to be interviewed regularly in ndtvs,ibns etc.

Posted by sahbas_s | Report as abusive

I will vote for Aravind Kejriwal. Will you?

Posted by Raydas | Report as abusive

Happy to see least few like Kejriwal spent their time for the people of this country and fight against corruption. It is beyond imagination as how arrogant and rotten the politicians have turned out to be. God only can save this country from this politicians.

All the best Kejriwal. Millions of people are with you and you make the difference and living a meaningful life.

Posted by MurugesanK | Report as abusive

Agree Kejriwal is working for a cause, but the method he is adapting will only lead to questions sorrounding his political ambitions. Imagine Kejriwal becoming PM and all the other politicians protesting against him demanding fuel price cut up to 50% and demanding increase in pay for all the government jobs up to 50%. Will he cope up with these things. Its easy to critise, but running a Govt. with a stable economy and keeping the country intact is very difficult, which the people should understand than blindly follow new found polititians…

Posted by ikrammd | Report as abusive

Kejriwals thinking is noble but the way he adapts in order to bring in change is difficult to digest. Imagine Kejriwal becoming a PM and all the people doing the gherao to his houses and protesting to cut down the fuel prices by 50% and increa salaries of lower income people by 30%. If he implements all the stuff that the people asks he will surely make our countrys economy poorer and poorer. People should understand that protesting and bringing things to light is essential but running a govt. with a stable economy and keeping the country intact are diffetent things

Posted by ikrammd | Report as abusive

Keriwal is more like a joker in a circus entertaining people all over the world with his antics. We are all enjoying it. We will continue to enjoy it even after, may be he captures power. When that happens we will get entertained more by him till the whole world laughs at India.

Posted by Vinodchennai | Report as abusive

today is the time …..if we still keep on discussing the way and mode nothing will happen ……either we fight back or get looted away by these selfish rotten politicians……….i support kejriwal vote for kejriwal….coz it requires bravery and strenth to stand in front of these stinking garbage called politics to clear …..and dont ask is bulldozer good or bare hand …if somebody is trying to clean dont throw more garbage at them

Posted by patriotindian | Report as abusive