A prominent face in the Lok Sabha elections is Arvind Kejriwal who will campaign in Haryana today. Nobel laureate Amartya Sen has called AAP's success in Delhi Assembly election a major achievement and saluted its electoral strategy.
"To be able to win electoral support massively in Delhi on the basis of a programme which is about equity even though their understanding of equity may be somewhat distorted, but I thought that what they were trying to do to win it without appeal to communal division, caste division was a major achievement. So I salute AAP electoral strategy and success," Sen said in an interview with CNBC-TV18.
Sen also said that the Arvind Kejriwal-led party can become a major force in India.
"I think how much can you expect from a party immediately. Do I expect AAP to learn from experience? Yes, I do. Can it become a major force in India? I think it can. It has to move a fair distance in terms of policy priority and I hope they will think about that," Sen told CNBC TV 18's Latha Venkatesh.
When asked whether AAP represents the common man, he said: "I think in a sense they are. AAP's arrival in India politics must be a major achievement and it has done better that I thought it might and I am happy about it.
Sen said AAP has to identify the common man in the country and then design its policies.
"In terms of making policy, they have to identify who the aam aadmi are. ... If you are looking for the poorest of the poor, they are not asking for cheaper electricity, because they do not have electricity. They are not asking for cheaper LPG, they don't have a cylinder," he said.
Sen has also asked the AAP to re-examine its position and widen the definition of aam aadmi. He said, "I don't doubt that they have intelligent people there. I've had some correspondence with Kejriwal in the past and I admire his courage and dedication. I've known Yogendra Yadav and I'm sure they would be thinking about it. But they need to understand what a party is fighting for equity and for the Indian poor. What kind of inequity they have to look at, which is the not the same issue as that sailed them to power in Delhi," he said.
"These are very early days so I would like to encourage them to think again and re-examine their position and make them not just for the aam aadmi in a very limited definition but aam aadmi in a wider definition. Given that I do wish them well," he added.
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