New Delhi: One of the founding members of Arvind Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party (AAP), Madhu Bhaduri, has quit the party alleging mistreatment of the women leaders.
"I have just one issue, and that is humanity. And women are humans. In this party, women are not considered humans," said Ms Bhaduri, who was a member of the party panel to chalk its foreign policy.
"The party has a mentality of a khap panchayat. There is no space for women. If the other women leaders have any self-respect, they will quit too," she told NDTV.
Ms Bhaduri, a former Indian ambassador to Portugal, wanted AAP to adopt a resolution whereby an apology would be issued to African women for Delhi Law Minister Somnath Bharti's raid at a building in south Delhi last month. The proposal was reportedly struck down at a national council meeting, and Ms Bhaduri was allegedly heckled by party workers.
"The party has changed for the weight of votes. They just want to win the elections," Ms Bhaduri claimed today.
AAP, however, has dismissed Ms Bhaduri's allegations. "It is not necessary for an individual opinion to be party's opinion," AAP's Ashutosh said, adding, "Women are respected the most by the party."
Ms Bhaduri is the second prominent AAP leader to have openly expressed her dissent barely within a month of the party forming the government in Delhi after its spectacular debut in the assembly elections.
Just a week ago, Vinod Kumar Binny, a legislator from Laxminagar, was expelled by AAP after he described Mr Kejriwal as a 'liar' and a 'dictator'. 39-year-old Mr Binny has now called for a 'dharna' against the AAP government.
"We are five MLAs in total. Twelve more people are joining us. If the government does not listen to us in 48 hours, then we will have another meeting and decide our next course of action. But we do not intend to do any harm to the Delhi government," Mr Binny said, who is demanding Mr Kejriwal's government delivers all its pre-poll promises on water, electricity and better security for women.
Mr Binny, a former Congressman, was one of AAP's giant-killers in the elections defeating Dr AK Walia, finance minister in the Sheila Dikshit government.