He is Ready to Compromise, I am Not, Says Prashant Bhushan on 'Breakdown' With Arvind Kejriwal: Highlights

New Delhi:

In an exclusive interview to NDTV, Aam Aadmi Party's Prashant Bhushan speaks for the first time about the rift within the party and much more.

Here are the highlights:

  • The issues are very serious which are on the basic ideas and principles on which the party was founded.
  • The real issue is that there has been some evidence that the party has slipped from principles of transparency.
  • There is certainly a great danger of that happening in the party (on a high-command culture, where only one person calls the shots)
  • We had formed a party which was different from all the other political parties where there is 'no one-man centric campaign'.
  • I spoke to Arvind and we discussed about decision-making processes in the party. These processes were to be credibly independent and collective in nature.
  • I respect Arvind's political judgments. But sometimes he could be wrong too.
  • I have some very serious disagreements with how AAP is functioning.
  • AAP not declaring party expenses in public domain.
  • Arvind used to getting his way, thinks his decision must always prevail.
  • Need people who can stand up to Kejriwal and differ with him.
  • I feel we have to be absolutely firm on our ethical principles but Arvind differs at times and says we need to make certain compromises in politics.
  • We have to be absolutely straight and true to the founding principles of our party.
  • There was clearly a lapse on our part in not checking the companies.
  • Also slippages in terms of putting out our account publicly on the website.
  • Not saying hanky panky. But systems need to be firmed up to stay on the path of transparency.
  • I told Arvind you have remarkable qualities, unique leader.
  • You must recognize you have some weaknesses. He said yes I do.
  • I said we must set systems such that its not your writ that should prevail in decision making.
  • Occasionally some issues of principals on which I put my foot down.
  • You can't make compromises in electoral politics.
  • I feel his approach may not be correct.
  • I was not privy to any kind of talks with Congress. But clearly letter sent to LG matter of record.
  • There was difference of opinion amongst members of Political Action Committee, National Executive Committee on whether we should seek Congress support again or not.
  • Letter to LG said - he should defer dissolution till we seek opinion of people whether we can again form government again.
  • Absolutely baseless and absurd allegation (on allegation that he and Yogendra Yadav are conspiring to unseat Arvind Kejriwal).
  • We have some differences with Arvind and we have tried to resolve them.
  • Where ever we had differences, I used to tell Arvind.
  • Personality cult can not run our party; what about internal democracy?
  • If party strays from founding principles, I can not stay with it.
  • But Yogendra Yadav or I never talked about removing him.
  • If Yogendra Yadav and I are removed, it's of no consequence to us.
  • It is a matter of public record that AAP tried to delay elections in Delhi.
  • In last 10 years, I have always believed BJP to be communal and a corrupt party (on Bhushans wanting to install BJP government)
  • I have filed petitions, I had filed against Jaitley's decisions.
  • I know Jaitley - he is lawyer. When he was very unwell, I called on him.
  • But to say I am close to Jaitley, BJP support - it is laughable and absurd.
  • I do not share my father's support for Kiran Bedi, he is his own man.
  • I was unhappy on selection of candidates.
  • My heart was not into campaigning for many of these candidates.
  • No formal decision of  NE to remove us.
  • It is irrelevant who should be in NE or PAC.
  • Large number of people attracted to party because of its founding principles and ideals.
  • What is important is that this party's decision making should be democratic and broad-based.
  • Can't follow high command culture that every political party has, to kneel before high command.
  • I am not considering leaving the party.
  • I am not a full timer with party.
  • My role in party is only to try and ensure it remains committed to original principles and ideals.
  • Need to broad-base decision making bodies.
  • Vast majority of volunteers and people who helped form party want the party to remain united.
  • Unfortunately, Arvind has not called me.
  • There has been a breakdown of communication.
  • For the last few days we have not spoken to each other.
  • But I am open and willing to talk.
Listen to the latest songs, only on JioSaavn.com