62-year-old Naren Jain had offered Mr Kejriwal his house when he had resigned after his first stint as Delhi Chief Minister and was looking for a place where he could stay and host party volunteers. Though Mr Kejriwal could not move into Mr Jain's home due to legal reasons, the AAP today gave him a ticket to contest the MCD elections from Chandni Chowk ward, North Delhi Municipal Corporation.
The other man who helped Mr Kejriwal was 57-year-old Harjeet Singh, who had given his 41, Hanuman Road bungalow to the Aam Aadmi Party during its initial days. Mr Kejriwal took up Mr Singh's offer. In fact, the central Delhi address was used by Mr Kejriwal to file his nomination paper as a Delhi resident during the 2013 Assembly election. Mr Kejriwal is otherwise a resident of Ghaziabad, where he was residing in the government quarters allotted to his wife, formerly with the Income Tax department, at Kaushmabi.
To return the favour, the party has now given Mr Singh a ticket to contest the Rajouri Garden Assembly by-election, where polling will take place on April 9. The seat fell vacant after Jarnail Singh resigned as an Aam Aadmi Party MLA to contest the recent Punjab Assembly polls.
An ardent Kejriwal supporter, Mr Singh is believed to have charged nothing from AAP for using his bungalow. The party office was later shifted to East Patel Nagar. After his resignation as Delhi Chief Minister during his first tenure, Mr Kejriwal had stayed put in his official residence at Tilak Lane. While he planned to vacate the residence, he scouted for an accommodation which could serve not only as a home but also a place where party leaders and volunteers could be hosted. He then zeroed down on 4-B Flagstaff Road, a quiet lane on Alipur Road in north Delhi's Civil Lines area, belonging to Mr Jain, son of former Congress MP from Chandni Chowk Bhiku Ram Jain.
The plan, however, ran into trouble after Mr Jain's elder brother claimed it to be a disputed property and threatened to approach the court. Mr Kejriwal then decided against moving into the accommodation. Now Mr Kejriwal's official residence and the 4-B Flagstaff Road bungalow are separated by just one bungalow. "I had offered my home to Mr Kejriwal but the Congress played mischief. My intentions behind giving my house to Mr Kejriwal were very noble that could not materialise," Mr Jain said.