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HomePoliticsIndiaThe rift widens between Vishwas and Kejriwal

The rift widens between Vishwas and Kejriwal

Delhi: The Aam Aadmi Party have three close friends — Arvind Kejriwal, Manish Sisodia and Kumar Vishwas. As AAP turns five this month, it seems unlikely that the trio will ever be a cohesive group again.

Recent developments indicate that the rift between poet-turned-politician Vishwas on one side, and Chief Minister Kejriwal and his deputy Sisodia on the other, has widened to a breakable point.

Sources from the two camps believed the strain in the friendship has hit a nadir. Bitterness has reached a point where a reunion seems unlikely, they said.

The party s National Council meeting held last week reflected this. Vishwas alleged that for the first time he was not among the speakers at the high-level meet.

The founder-members of the party, who participated in the anti-graft campaign that was the precursor to AAP, were known to be close friends. Vishwas often fondly reminisced how key decisions over the formation of the party took place at his residence in Ghaziabad.

Vishwas, who fought and lost to — Congress vice president Rahul Gandhi in in the 2014 Lok Sabha polls, has been upset with the leadership for some time now.

Vishwas believes he has been overlooked by the top brass.The  bone of contention is the tussle over a Rajya Sabha seat.

With its brute majority in the 67-member Delhi Legislative Assembly, AAP can send three people to the Upper House of Parliament. Vishwas sees himself as a strong contender for one of the seats.

But the leadership has apprehensions about that. What if Kumar starts attacking the party after becoming a Rajya Sabha member, asked an AAP considered close to Kejriwal.

The Kejriwal camp had its share of grievances against Vishwas, whom they disparagingly referred to as a part-time politician because of his professional commitments as a poet.

There was apprehension that he was being instigated by somebody outside the party, the said.

An AAP member close to Kejriwal also referred to fears that a coup was being planned at the behest of sacked AAP minister Kapil Mishra.

Vishwas and Sisodia are known to be close childhood buddies from Pilkhuwa, a small town in western Uttar Pradesh.

The bond between Kejriwal, a civil servant, and Sisodia, a former journalist, grew stronger when the two started an NGO to work for the downtrodden in Delhi and later for the RTI campaign.

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