Surrounded by his Aam Aadmi Party supporters wearing caps and wielding brooms, the former Infosys director V.V. Balakrishnan addressed a small audience in a mix of Tamil, Kannada and English at his first political rally at a cul-de-sac in Ashoknagar on Friday.

Mr. Balakrishnan, who is AAP’s candidate for the Lok Sabha election from the Bangalore Central constituency, said Prime Minister Manmohan Singh was “a good man” but “not effective”. The Union government spends Rs. 3.5 lakh crore on various programmes every year, “but the programmes are not being implemented”, he said.

Corruption lies at the core of inefficiency, Mr. Balakrishnan said. As much as 20 to 25 per cent of business earnings was lost in corruption, and if the malaise was addressed, businesses were bound to get more competitive. Lack of jobs had sparked a rise in crime, Mr. Balakrishnan said. “We need employment and we need to create 10 lakh jobs every year in India.”

His family did not initially want him to join politics “as it is associated with corruption”, he said. “I wanted to change the system. I have made enough money and I decided I want to do something beyond Infosys,” he said.


Constituency watch: KarnatakaMarch 7, 2014

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