The Aam Aadmi Party’s Arvind Kejriwal has said he is confident of his victory from Varanasi and that his party’s increasing popularity had left the BJP frustrated. “In the past few days, the BJP goons have not even spared ordinary people here and have resorted to violent attacks,” he told The Hindu in an exclusive interview. “If Mr. Modi is so confident of his victory, why are his goons attacking us?” he asked.

Mr. Kejriwal accused the BJP and the Congress of being in cahoots with each other. “They are only interested in toeing the line of big industrialists,” he said. He said the two parties were responsible for deflecting focus from the real issues that affected the people. “In the past few days, we have only heard of Robert Vadra and Adani,” he said. “The BJP has raised such rubble on Mr. Vadra. If they are sincere, what is stopping them from filing an FIR against him in Rajasthan where they are in power?”

He said his party was determined to defeat both Narendra Modi and Rahul Gandhi. “Imagine what will happen if both of them lose elections against AAP. That is how history will be created,” he said.

In his speeches in small gatherings across Varanasi on Wednesday, Arvind Kejriwal receives applause when he teases Narendra Modi. “ 56-inch chhaati se kaam nahi chalta, kaam karne ke liye kaleja chahiye (A 56-inch chest does not work, you need guts to get work done).”

He describes in detail how he was treated by BJP supporters when he visited the constituency after announcing his decision to fight elections here. “They threw eggs at me, then ink, then bottles and then stones. Now they are trying to create a fear psychosis among ordinary people,” he says.

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