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State campaigners claim credit to AAP success

- Relentless canvassing by Bihar professionals helped Kejriwal party clinch numbers

The dream debut of Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) in the Delhi Assembly elections has brought into focus the important role people from the state played in its success.

Physiotherapist Ratnesh Choudhary, the founder member of AAP in Bihar, spoke highly of the people from the state who campaigned for AAP candidates for almost one-and-a-half months relentlessly.

“Around 250 professionals from Bihar campaigned for AAP Delhi election candidates. Few have returned but most are still in the national capital. Just passion and dedication towards the party took people there for campaigning. These people were initially associated with India Against Corruption, a movement led by people of the country to curb corruption,” said Ratnesh.

AAP has grabbed 28 seats in the Delhi elections.

Three AAP candidates hailing from the state, who have won the Delhi polls, are Somnath Bharti (Gaya) from Malviya Nagar, Sanjeev Jha (Samastipur) from Burari and Bandana Kumari (Muzaffarpur) from Shalimar Bagh constituencies.

“We thank the people of Bihar who campaigned for AAP. People came from other states like Maharashtra and Karnataka too. As a people’s representative now, I must thank everyone for supporting me and other AAP candidates,” Bandana told The Telegraph over phone from Delhi. She trounced BJP candidate Rabindra Nath Bansal.

R.N. Singh of Begusarai, earlier a deputy manager the Barauni refinery of in Indian Oil Corporation, spent around a month in Delhi to campaign for the AAP candidate. “We are the victims of corruption and I want a corruption-free society. I did not care for my job and left it without any second thought. We have to change the system and AAP is the only solution. With great hope and dedication, I campaigned for the AAP. I visited several constituencies and campaigned door to door. Finally, the results are for people to see. I was not dependent on anyone in Delhi, I took care of my own expenses. However, the rigorous day and night campaigns helped candidates and we came out with flying numbers,” said Singh from Delhi.

In Bihar, AAP does not have any state unit as such but has committees in all 38 districts. “We have committees comprising 10 to 15 members in every district and working to raise local issues. They have been assigned the work to take up the issue at the block- and panchayat-level as well. Unlike other political parties, AAP does not have any funding as such and in Bihar, we have not yet opened any account of the party,” said Ratnesh.

On AAP contesting the Lok Sabha 2014 polls from Bihar, he said: “Yes, there are possibilities. We are working on it. I have been receiving around 100 to 150 calls everyday from people interested in taking party membership.”

AAP in Bihar is also involved in many other activities such as helping people through mediation or filing RTI petitions on behalf of complainants. “AAP members helped me when I was injured in the Gandhi Maidan blasts on October 27,” said Nagendra Singh of Bhagwanpur, Muzaffarpur district.

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