Arvind Kejriwal Called Kumar Vishwas 'Younger Brother'. That's Changed

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Arvind Kejriwal Called Kumar Vishwas 'Younger Brother'. That's Changed

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AAP leader Kumar Vishwas told NDTV that he is aware of a campaign against him by some leaders.

NEW DELHI: 

Highlights

  1. We all work for a party, we are not relatives: Kumar Vishwas
  2. Only focussing on the Rajasthan assembly elections, he says
  3. Kumar Vishwas appears increasingly isolated within AAP
Just out of the drubbing that Arvind Kejriwal's Aam Aadmi Party had received in the Delhi municipal elections, the AAP was hurtling towards another crisis in April-end. There was talk that senior AAP leader Vishwas Kumar had planned a coup to replace Mr Kejriwal as the party chief and the party appeared to be headed for a split. Mr Kejriwal stopped the slide with a single message on Twitter, calling Mr Vishwas his "younger brother". Mr Kumar Vishwas had then promptly retweeted.

Less than 50 days later, Mr Vishwas suggested in an interview to NDTV on Tuesday that he was not sure about his relationship with Mr Kejriwal any longer.

"We all work for a party... we are not relatives... we all work for a common cause," the AAP co-founder said, distancing himself from the "younger brother" remark.

In course of the interview, the poet-politician spoke of attempts to tarnish his image by party leaders or undermine him but suggested that he couldn't care less and was only focussing on the Rajasthan assembly elections in November-December 2018. "These days, the Rajasthan election is the only thing on my mind, the only thing I talk about, discuss or think," he said.

Leading the party's campaign in Rajasthan is a responsibility that the 48-year-old leader was given after he appeared headed to quit the party last month. It was also part of the same deal that Amanatullah Khan, the Delhi legislator who had accused him of planning to dethrone Mr Kejriwal, was suspended on charges of indiscipline.

But he appears increasingly isolated within the party. In private conversations, party leaders in the national capital have made no secrets about the trust deficit. More so, after sacked water minister Kapil Mishra, considered to be his proxy by sections of the party, went on an overdrive accusing the AAP government of corruption.

Mr Vishwas said he was the first to speak against Mishra's actions. "I want to completely distance myself from Mishra, his remarks have been shameful," he said, saying there was no need for him to speak further on this chapter.

Mr Vishwas insisted he didn't feel isolated but was aware what was spoken about him behind his back.

"My own party colleagues peddle rumours against me and try to destroy my image, but I want to tell them, I shall not be defeated," said Mr Kumar, likening himself to Abhimanyu in the Hindu epic Mahabharata who was trapped in a labyrinth, and killed.

He also brought up how Deputy Chief Minister Manish Sisodia had visited Mr Khan after his suspension at his house and Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal appointed him to head a Delhi Assembly panel. Then, he added, he had nothing to say on this because who the Deputy Chief Minister meets or the Chief Minister appoints "is their decision".

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