Indian Express

AAP party with agitational DNA, says Nilekani

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Nandan Nilekani at a campaign rally in Bangalore Friday. PTI Nandan Nilekani at a campaign rally in Bangalore Friday. PTI

Barely a week into his tenure as an official member of the Congress, Infosys co-founder and Bangalore South Lok Sabha candidate Nandan Nilekani on Friday seemed to have found his footing as he attacked the political credentials of the BJP’s five-time MP and the Aam Aadmi Party.
Nilekani, at the Press Club on Friday, called AAP an “agitationist party” and his main rival in Bangalore South, H N Ananth Kumar, as being too dependent on Narendra Modi.

The decision of AAP deciding not to pull any punches in the poll action in the urban Bangalore South constituency and its fielding of a candidate was not a source of concern, Nilekani said, while dismissing the party’s chances in the polls. “I am really confident that it is not a factor in Bangalore South,” he said.

“While I agree that AAP has brought some very positive things into politics like the way they raise money and so on, I think it is an agitational party. There are focused on agitations and dharna. It is in their DNA. This is not what India needs,” he said. “What India needs is deep reforms in its government, society, administration,” Nilekani added.

On the challenge posed by Ananth Kumar, who has been elected five times in the constituency — primarily by getting local Congress leaders to work for him, Nilekani said it was sad to see the MP having to fall back on Narendra Modi to seek votes.

“It is a sad day when a five-term BJP MP has to constantly invoke Modi in his campaign. It shows his own situation,” the Congress candidate said. He claimed that the Bangalore South constituency was upset by the sitting MP appearing only at the time of the elecions. “I have no intention of losing this election. I will defeat him,” he said.

Nilekani claimed that it was necessary for him to enter politics to bring about the reforms needed to affect change in the country.

“I realized that if India has to have the reforms that it needs, then you cannot stay away from politics. It is easy to stay away from politics. Unless people like me and others come into politics, unless we bring in reforms, we cannot change the country,” he said, while claiming to be a practitioner of a new style of politics.

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