Redefining the Indian Left: The AAP Way


  • Dr. Abhishek Nath Assistant Professor, Department of Political science, Delhi University, India



The spectacular success of BJP in the recent General Elections invited a mixed assessment from different positions. But mostly it was oversimplification and undermining of its success. On the other hand, the victory of AAP in assembly elections was taken as an alternative in making. For example along with other commenter’s in an article (published in The Indian Express, 26 May 2014, op-ed page) renowned lawyer and AAP leader Shri Shanti Bhushan analysed the electoral success of BJP and the future course for AAP that lacks in substance. It tried to under-assessed the BJP’s success and oversimplified the road ahead for AAP. As it like wait till BJP does the same blunders as Congress did. In this paper some light will be thrown on BJP’s success and legacy but will mainly discuss the AAP phenomena in Indian politics with a view to access the recent developments in party and as an emerging alternative that can also be an opportunity to capture the space vacated by the Left movement in India.  

First of all I would like to argue that considering the BJP after the failed Janta Party

Experiment as a ‘faction of Janta Party’ (Shri Bhushan’s views) is not a correct judgment. Actually the Bhartiya Jan Sangha was the last party that remained as Janta Party coalition after the other four parties that came together without merging their distinctive identities to form Janta Party left the coalition at their will to pursue their own ambitions. Hence it was not just a matter of chance that the new party that emerged on the Indian political scene after the failed Janta experiment named Bhartiya Janta Party (Bhartiya Jana Sangha + Janta Party = Bhartiya Janta Party). The then leaders not only launched a new party with inheriting the name but also the legacy. As it was more moderate and reformed on many policy agendas by incorporating Gandhian- JP Legacy to fight against the ruling dispensation. That seed has now grown as a Banyan tree and shadowing the Indian political scene defying all ifs and buts. Although it is still to be tested that how will a full majority BJP will work in coming years as many scholars of Indian politics doubt the BJP’s course of action as a single full majority party (see Christophe Jaffrelot, 2003). It is also because the earlier BJP led government was a crippled and soft BJP as NDA coalition and also Atal Bihari Bajpai as its leader and was not able to pursue its core Hindutwa demands of building Ram temple, Uniform Civil Code and the abolition of Article 370 of the Constitution for the full merger of J&K into Indian Union.   


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Author Biography

Dr. Abhishek Nath, Assistant Professor, Department of Political science, Delhi University, India






How to Cite

Nath, D. A. (2015). Redefining the Indian Left: The AAP Way. International Journal Online of Humanities, 1(4), 1–5.