'Common man' Arvind Kejriwal's party named Aam Aadmi Party

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New Delhi:  Two months after he announced his decision to launch a political party, activist-turned-politician Arvind Kejriwal finally named his party today - the Aam Aadmi Party.

In the presence of over 300 members, at its first formal meeting, Mr Kejriwal announced the name of his party. With that, a national council of the party has been set up and the party constitution formally adopted.

The national council will next elect a 30-member national executive which will be the party's highest decision-making body.

Interestingly, the party will not have a President, Vice President or General Secretary, but will have only a national convenor who will be elected by the national executive. The reason? Mr Kejriwal says his party is for the aam addmi or common man. It will not have a "high command style of functioning"; there will be no "hierarchical structures".

The National council meeting is taking place at the Constitution Club, in the heart of the national capital. This will be followed by a "youth rally" on Sunday, from Rajghat to Shaheed Park.

Monday is the big day when the Aam Aadmi Party will be formally launched at Jantar Mantar, the venue of many of Mr Kejriwal's and India Against Corruption's (IAC) protests. Mr Kejriwal's close aides say, all those who turn up at Jantar Mantar on Monday will be treated as founding members of the party.

Interestingly, the meeting is taking place behind closed doors, with the media waiting outside, for an official announcement. A press conference is expected at 5 pm today when more details will be shared with the media.  

What's also interesting is the date of the party's launch - November 26. It's the day the Constitution of India was adopted in 1949. The party will also draw heavily from the Constitution.

"Wednesday night, we were writing the objectives of the new party and I said it will be great if we can base it on the preamble of the Indian Constitution. If we can live up to the Constitution there is nothing like that. We have a ready preamble there," Yogendra Yadav, member of core team of Kejriwal's upcoming party, had said.

As far as the party symbol is concerned, many suggestions are being considered. Among them, a book, that would signify the Constitution. Some have even suggested that mango should be the party's symbol as it symbolises the aam aadmi.  

Congress' Manish Tiwari, meanwhile, reacting to the name, said "Aam admi has been our slogan, no one can take that from us."

Mr Kejriwal's decision to enter politics had led to a parting of ways with his mentor, Anna Hazare. The activist-turned-politician had earlier said that his group will not use 'India Against Corruption' (IAC) as its name after the formation of his political party on November 26. Anna had laid claim to that name.

Mr Kejriwal's decision to launch what he describes as "a political alternative" was announced in August, when the India Against Corruption movement that Anna and he had headlined appeared to be dissipating in public. Mr Kejriwal was at the time on a six-day fast in Delhi. The crowds at his base camp were thin. The government ignored him, refusing to urge him to eat, or to talk about when the Lokpal bill - named for the new anti-graft body it births- would be cleared as law. It has passed in the Lok Sabha, but has been stalled in the Rajya Sabha.

So just how will Mr Kejriwal's party be different from the rest? Will it have the blessings of Anna Hazare? And will it be able to deliver on the big promises made to the aam aadmi? Only time will tell.

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