Arvind Kejriwal, the byproduct of opportunistic politics who encashed on people’s sentiments and built his political shop by the shooting and scooting of allegations on all and sundry, is today writing apology letters and even asking his party members to do the same to escape the wrath of the courts.
Arvind has now sent a written apology to Bikram Singh Majithia of Shiromani Akali Dal, whom he had previously accused of patronizing the drug mafia during the run up to the Punjab elections. In the letter, Kejriwal states that he has recently learnt his allegations are unfounded, and hence there should be no politics on the matter. It is interesting to note that Kejriwal, who openly flouted election ethics and blatantly relied on libelous loose-cannoning for all his electoral campaigning pitches, is today asking people not to politicize the same.
Kejriwal states that due to his allegations against Majithia at various political rallies, public meetings, TV programs, print, electronic and social media outreaches, Majithia had filed a defamation case against him in the Amritsar courts. Now, he would like to retract his statements, apologize and express regret over the damage this has made to Majithia’s reputation.
But will Kejriwal tender his apology in all the aforementioned means of communication for the same amount of time he spent defaming Majithia on them?
If only he had spent his time more judiciously on actionable items and promises in his own state instead of engaging in overnight political expansions, he would not be burning midnight oil to solve court cases. But the fact that a political party which set up shop recently and which claims to have collected funds from the public for its own sustenance, engages in slandering rival politicians in all other states even when it has no scope of expansion there, makes it suspect if these political libels were deliberately aimed at benefiting other parties and if the whole libelous frothing itself is an outsourced game of a bigger political ploy.
In the past, Kejriwal has apologized to BJP’s Nitin Gadkari and Avtar Singh Bhadana to settle defamation suits. The anti-corruption crusader party which made it a point to throw unfounded allegations of corruption on every other person to build an overnight image, is now on an apologizing splurge. It is considering settling defamation cases filed against it by union minister Arun Jaitley and others.
But in a nation whose people have to wait routinely for decades to even get one judgement, this crude tactic of shoot and scoot to receive political mileage and then retract their loose statements with an apology after wasting the honorable court’s time, is not just a mockery of the courts but also the common man. Yes, that common man whose emotions were played upon while building this party.
It is time the IITian who identified himself as an overnight icon of youth politics understood that political parties can be built overnight with lies, but trust is not something that can be built overnight. It has to be earned with believable actions and modest deeds. His tag lines of ‘anti-corruption’ and ‘honesty’ that drew many a youth initially, does not inspire any hope anymore as people of the nation now shudder to believe any new political party. It is not just the people he has let down but even his own party men who are seemingly upset with his sheepishness.
Although late in the day, it looks like some light has dawned on the party that is now struggling to make good its motor-mouthed talking with a letter writing spree. But unfortunately politics is no soap opera or a movie review that one can get away with by making unfounded allegations at the cost of the public exchequer and personal reputations of public figures. Hence, it is important and imperative for the courts to set a precedent that politics is not about serving lies and libel but all about serving public interest, and that the courts’ time and wisdom cannot be taken for granted, especially for political gimmickry.