Eyeing 2014 polls, AAP`s massive membership drive begins from Jan 10
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Last Updated: Monday, January 06, 2014, 10:15
Zee Media Bureau/Ritesh K Srivastava

New Delhi: After having successfully contested the assembly elections and forming government in Delhi, the Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) led by Arvind Kejriwal has now begun preparations for the crucial 2014 Lok Sabha polls, which is believed to be a game changer in the national politics.

The AAP is set to begin a massive all-India recruitment drive for which the party will waive off its Rs 10 membership fee from January 10. According to reports, the party's 'Mein Bhi Aam Aadmi' drive will continue till January 26.

A decision to this effect was taken during the two-day long national executive meet in the capital, during which the party leaders suggested that AAP should contest Lok Sabha and polls and appeared confident that the pary would do well.

After the national executive meet, the party announced that it will contest the next Lok Sabha polls on 300 seats and field its candidates from all major states.

Importantly, the party also said that it will field candidates from all seven Lok Sabha seats in Delhi.

After Delhi, Haryana will likely be the party's next battle ground. Party spokesperson Yogendra Yadav announced that other than all 10 Lok Sabha seats, the party would also contest all 90 seats in the assembly elections to be held later this year, even if they were to clash with the national elections.

In view of the upcoming Lok Sabha polls, the party said that its election manifesto will be ready by March.

The party also asserted that there will be no let-up in its campaign against corruption but sought time to set up a system to tackle it.

The debutant political party would contest the "maximum number of Lok Sabha seats, but the number of seats has not been finalised yet", senior party leader Yogendra Yadav told reporters.

"From Jan 10, we are launching a membership drive, 'Main Bhi Aam Aadmi' (I too am a common man)," he said. Party leader Gopal Rai will head the membership campaign, which will conclude Jan 26.

"We want people not just to join the AAP, but also do something for the country," he said.

An AAP spokesperson said, "After the Delhi elections, we have seen an upsurge. We are launching a donation drive and a campaign as we want to tap this new upsurge to fight the VIP culture and corruption".

Yogendra Yadav said the Rs.10 fee earlier charged for primary membership had become a "bottleneck", and it was decided to "suspend" the fee.

"A three-member National Campaign Coordination Committee will look into the party's manifesto, fund-raising and other poll-related issues. People can apply for candidature for the Lok Sabha polls till Jan 15, and the applications will then be screened at the state level," he said.

"The first list of candidates should be out by Jan 15-20," he said.

Announcing its national ambitions, the AAP had Saturday announced it will contest the "maximum number of seats" in the April-May Lok Sabha polls and most of its candidates were expected to be declared by February-end.

However, the party's popular face and Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal said he will not fight the polls despite Yogendra Yadav saying that the party wanted him to be their prime ministerial candidate.

Asserting that there would be no compromise on corruption, Kejriwal sought time for taking action.

Kejriwal was responding to a question on whether his party's tie-up with the Congress in Delhi would result in letting off the latter party, which AAP charged of corruption in the run-up to the Delhi polls.

Kejriwal, however, added that the "back ends" needed to be strengthened before action can be taken.

"Unless we strengthen our back end, announcements will not help. For example, we said we will give an anti-corruption helpline number, I have been working on its back end since a week," he said.

First Published: Monday, January 06, 2014, 10:15

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