Former Mayor Annapurna Mishra of the BJP is fighting what may be the toughest battle of her political career. Early in May, her son, Kapil Mishra, declared his decision to enter politics not as a BJP candidate, but as a member of the six-month-old Aam Aadmi Party (AAP).
A former advocacy officer with Amnesty International, Mr. Kapil is AAP candidate from North-East Delhi’s Karawal Nagar. He is prepared to take on the three-time BJP MLA from the area Mohan Singh Bisht.
A graduate from the Delhi School of Social Work, Mr. Kapil (23) was quick to respond when asked if he did not face any dilemma in joining the AAP and not the BJP with which his mother has been associated for over two decades.
“Frankly it was not a very difficult decision to make when it comes to choosing between the Aam Aadmi Party on one side and the BJP and the Congress on the other. But yes, there were lots of things at stake as my mother has been an old time worker of the BJP. It obviously sends out a negative message when a member of such a family goes to another political party,” said Mr. Kapil, who has been associated with AAP leader Arvind Kejriwal since his Parivartan days.
He admitted that his mother disapproved of his decision but in the same breadth he also spoke about how he reasoned with her. “I just asked my mother if the situation on the ground change and if corruption would go down if the BJP comes to power? And till date she has not responded to my question. My mother has not approved of the decision till date but I am sure one day she will be able to see my perspective too.”
Mr. Kapil is not the only young politician to leave the political affiliation with traditional parties to opt for the AAP. For Deshraj Raghav, a sitting civic body Councillor from South Delhi, who was formerly associated with the Congress in Delhi, the problem is not just one. Mr. Raghav is the AAP candidate from Uttam Nagar Assembly constituency.
The list of those who opted the AAP is long. At least 15 of the AAP candidates declared till date have been associated with conventional political parties. Even the party candidate from Wazirpur, actor Praveen Kumar of ‘Bheem’ fame was earlier a BJP worker.