Ever since I joined the AAP and started posting about my political leanings, many BJP fans have started spewing vitrolic on me.The fact that it did not affect my several Congress friends is itself quite telling. I think I must narrate my BJP roots and why I changed my leanings to AAP.
1. Long before the BJP was a party of any consequence, my father was the President of Santacruz East. He was a member of the local RSS shaka too. My mother was the leader of the women’s wing of BJP. Most initial meetings of the BJP, when it had no power, were held in my house. I listened in.
2. Being a public servant, my father could not take a post in the party. My mother took the official post.
3. My father’s leanings ( and my own ) arose from two facts
– Hindus were being treated as second class citizens in their own country. We were appeasing to the minorities. I still hold this view.
– The Congress was a corrupt party and would resort to any subterfuge to remain in power. The Emergency is a prime example.
4. Over period of time the BJP acquired power and grew from strength to strength. My father slowly disassociated himself as did my mother. The party was no longer a ‘start up’ willing to usher in change. It was filled with equally corrupt and power hungry politicians who were no different from what we were seeking to get away from.
5. The Hindutva card was also misused. From road side Ganesh Mandals sprouting up everywhere to ruffians going around in bagwa bandans, we soon started to act in the manner which was detestable to any respectful citizen of this country. We were being ‘Talibanised’
6. The disenchantment with the BJP was soon complete. It was an equally corrupt party. Religion was being misused to stay in power. How different were things from where we were trying to get away from, I asked myself.
7. The last straw was the quality of the candidates the BJP put up. Poonam Mahajan was given a ticket. A lady with no merit and yet the highest net worth amongst all Mumbai candidates. How did she amass so much wealth does not take any guessing. The candidates in general had the highest count of criminal cases against them. As against this the AAP put up Phiroze Palkhiwala, the eminent lawyer and nephew of Nani Palkhiwala.
My decision was made.