02 October 2012

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Read Full Party Vision Document of Arvind Kejriwal Political Party

Read Full Party Vision Document of Arvind Kejriwal Political Party

Arvind Kejriwal has released a vision document for his political party.

Full text of Arvind Kejriwal’s draft vision statement


The promise of Swaraj beckons the future of India
It challenges us to recover the true spirit of Swaraj. It invites us to redeem an old pledge. Swaraj was never merely liberation from the colonial rule.  Swaraj promised nothing short of self-rule:  people’s control over their destiny, power to decide on matters concerning their well-being, to direct the apparatus of power and hold rulers accountable.

Swaraj is about rule by the people, not by netas or babus.
Sixty-five years after Independence, the promise of Swaraj is yet to be redeemed. Democracy has been reduced to a tiresome routine that involves electing the rulers once in five years, while being subject to indifference and indignity at the hands of politicians and bureaucrats in between.  Political parties are not mechanisms for finding and airing People’s voices; all of them have become election machines. These machines are designed to catch voters and use them as fodders to convert money into power and power back into more money. At best, these parties hold out an illusory promise of “Good Governance”, but that is no substitute for self-government. The very idea of Swaraj is receding from Our collective consciousness.

India's future asks this question to all of us: shall we allow the idea of Swaraj to disappear, to disintegrate, and to dissolve from our collective consciousness?  Or, are we audacious enough to re-imagine, re-integrate, and re-build the idea of Swaraj for our time?

From Popular Protest to People's Power This audacity marked the origin of popular protest in our country against massive corruption in high places.

The  Janlokpal  movement  began  as  an  expression  of popular  anger  born  out  of  the  helplessness  and frustration of ordinary citizens in the face of corrupt and unresponsive  regimes.  Soon the movement became a Symbol of people’s power against the political establishment.

A  wide-spread  anger  with  the  visible  corruption  of politicians  and  the  bureaucrats  led  to  identification  of the  root  cause  of  corruption.  It  was  not  long  before corruption  embedded  in  policies  and  the  corruption Inherent in the system was identified.

 It's  victim,  the ordinary  citizen,  is  not  free  of  the  taint  of  corruption either. Gradually protest against corruption sought new tools; opposition was accompanied by a search for alternatives.  An agitation that began with remedying an institution has evolved into a movement that has taken
up the challenge of reforming the entire system.

This moment offers an opportunity for this movement to look back at its own roots and also to look ahead to its future direction.  The Janlokpal movement draws its inspirations, ideas, and icons from our freedom struggle.

It belongs to the tradition of patriotism, which saw the 'world as one family'. It has drawn its sustenance from people’s struggles for popular control over natural resources in the post-colonial era. Thus, it has to build
upon  traditions  of  popular  struggle  as  well  as constructive  work.  The  quest  for  Swaraj  for  the  last person  defines  the  ideological  horizon  for  this movement.

and now on to transformative politics

This journey has brought us today to the doorsteps of mainstream politics, for politics is the center stage of the present system, the stage where the system is made and unmade. Over the years, this stage has lost its sheen and has become the site for an unbridled pursuit of narrow self-interest. This puts off and scares the best elements in our society, who decide to stay away from politics. This sets off a vicious cycle: corruption drives good citizen out of politics; their absence in turn makes the political arena worse than before.

Someone  has  to  break  this  vicious  cycle  and  accept  the  challenge  of  stepping  on  to  this  stage.  The experience of Janlokpal movement has taught us that we cannot make any big or enduring change in the system if we turn our back to politics. If politics serves as a shield for all that is unholy in our public life, an attempt to cleanse the system must begin with politics. Someone must stand up to this unholy nexus and build politics of selfless service to the country.

We are not giving up the movement and the path of struggle in order to enter politics, narrowly construed as the game of winning elections and acquiring power. Rather, we enter politics as one more step in our struggle. We do not enter politics to acquire and exercise power; we do so to dismantle monopolies of power and return this power back to the people.  It  is  our  firm  conviction  that  movements  for  social  transformation  must  combine  popular  struggles  and constructive work with electoral politics.

Politics is not an optional activity. If politics is about maintaining or changing the given balance of power, then it is not confined  to  what  the  states  and  governments  do;  all  the  spheres  of  our  life  –  administration,  police,  judiciary, economy, society and even family – are implicated in politics. We have only two options: either we determine the course of politics or allow politics to determine the course of our life. Those who wish to shape the course of history in the light of their ideals do not have an option except for politics.

The idea of swaraj is the cornerstone of our politics. We envision a world where every country, every province, every village, and every locality enjoys freedom within its own sphere, where every individual and community can decide  on  matters  concerning  their  well-being,  where demos  rules  over  the  governmental  apparatus,  where community is its own government. We dream of a world without coercion or violence among state, community and individual, where different faiths and cultures live in harmony, where happiness of one is not secured at the cost of unhappiness of another, where each person and community can lay claim to only as much as may be available  to  everyone  else  and  to  future  generations, where  the  relationships  between  and  among  nations and between humans and nature are marked by mutual respect and friendliness. We look forward to a state of affairs where each person and society gets to understand, introspect, and redefine oneself.

Such a vision presupposes basic transformation in the prevailing system. It would entail: That people hold the reigns to government and
administration,  that  central  government  may control  only  minimum  necessary  powers  and resources, that maximum possible decisions are
taken  at  the  level  of  village  or  neighborhood, that  people's  voice  must  trump  in-between elections  too  and  that  public  opinion  and
popular legitimacy must have supreme respect; That economic and developmental policies

must  suit  our  context  and  needs,  that  what people need must be determined by them, not by experts and officials, that our development must not  imitate  models  from  outside,  that  instead our  path  of  development  must  be  guided  by pursuit  of  equality  and  the  needs  of  our  last person, that we must seek a sustainable balance of  development  with  nature  and  environment, that we must prevent the growth of monopolies, that  we  must  not  allow  the  logic  of  capital, market mechanisms and profit motivation to be the sole drivers of our economy;

That all social hierarchies based on accident of birth must go, that gender and caste inequalities must be attacked forthwith, that affirmative
action is needed for those social groups who have suffered from discrimination and disadvantage, that all religions and sect enjoy equal respect and none  may  be  allowed  to  dominate  others,  that the  interests  and  rights  of  the  minorities  get special protection; and,

That  swaraj  in  ideas  and  cultures  be  pursued, that everyone should receive equal opportunities for quality and relevant education, that linguistic diversities be preserved, that unequal treatment of  languages  must  come  to  an  end,  that indigenous and peoples knowledge be respected and preserved, so that we can stand on our feet while we learn from the world.

Swaraj as people’s self-governance: our policy vision
This vision needs to be translated into specific policies after extensive and informed discussion. Embracing politics entails taking a position on all the major questions of our time. At the same time, politics also mandates a duty to listen to all sides and to set up a dialogue with everyone concerned. We accept this responsibility in all humility. We shall take up all the major contested issues in the country and provide a platform for informed and open-minded dialogue with the people and especially, with the younger generation.

 Here we have identified a few of these issues and indicated our initial position, subject to dialogue and debate

1. There should be an independent, powerful, and effective Janlokpal at the Centre and Janlokayuktas at the States to deal with corruption. There should be an effective mechanism for bringing back the black money deposited abroad.

2. There  should  be  broad-ranging  electoral  reforms, including  reforms  to  eliminate  the  role  of  money and muscle-power, to provide the right to reject and to  institute  the  accountability  of  representatives through the right to recall.

3. The locus of decision-making should be shifted to, or proximate to the people. As far as possible, power and the resources required to execute that power, must  be  transferred  to  the  village  or  ward  level. Only those powers should be left for upper tiers that cannot possibly be exercised by local communities. People must be consulted directly on key national
decisions.  Citizens must be consulted on any decision that affects their life or livelihood.

4. Broad-ranging  and  fundamental  administrative, police  and  judicial  reforms  need  to  be  initiated  so that the interface of the common citizen with public functionaries  is  not  marked  by  bribes,  delays  and indignity. All public functionaries should be made accountable to the people.
5. The right of local communities to land, forests, water and all natural resources in their area must be recognized. The state must not acquire land barring exceptional circumstances.  Private monopolies in natural resources must be not be permitted.

6. The  state  must  provide  free,  equal  and  quality school  education  to  all  children.  The  powers  and resources  of  executing  this  responsibility  must  be transferred  to  the  gram  sabha.    Inequality  in educational  opportunities  between  the  rich  and poor,  the  urban  and  the  rural  or  government  and private  schools,  must  be  eliminated.  No student must  miss  out  on  higher  education  for  want  of resources.  Education for-profit must not be permitted.  Education must impart knowledge, skills for employment, self-confidence, and focus on creating a good human being.

7. The state must take the responsibility of universal health-care.  Public hospitals must be equipped to provide complete and free treatment of every kind
of disease.  The local gram sabha or ward sabha must have the power and resources to run a local hospital.  Alternative medical systems and local
health traditions must get their due along with allopathy.

8. The future of the country continues to be tied with having  a  future  for  village  India.  Therefore,  the distribution  of  national  resources  must  be
proportionate to the population between urban and rural  India.  Plans  for  rural  development  must  be made by those who live in rural India and not in the
capital cities. All public facilities and functionaries must  be  under  the  effective  control  of  the  gram sabhas.

9. India's future must have room for agriculture and farmers. This requires that farmers should be able to  earn  reasonable  profit  on  agricultural  yield.
Employment opportunities apart from agriculture must  also  be  available  in  the  villages.  These objectives  mandate  transfer  of  significant
proportion  of  national  resources  to  local communities  for  this  purpose,  so  that  they  can make their own plans and remunerative prices do
not lead to price rise in food grains.

10. The  state  must  accept  responsibility  for  full employment,  and  appropriate  wages  for  all  work.   We believe society needs to take care of the elderly,
destitute  and  disabled  amongst  us  and  the government  to  commit  adequate  powers  and resources    to  the  gram  sabhas  to  execute  this
effectively.  Safety-nets  are  also  needed  for  the interests of unorganized labor.

11. There need to be effective mechanisms in place to stop female foeticide and violence against women. 
Girls  in  rural  areas  must  be  provided  special opportunities  to  study.  The  prior  approval  of  the women of the local community be taken before any
liquor outlet is allowed to be set up anywhere. One-third  of  seats  in  Parliament  and  legislative assemblies must be reserved for women.

12. There must be effective mechanisms to stop caste-based  violence  and  harassment.  Educationally disadvantaged  communities  must  get  special
opportunities. The system of reservations for Dalits, Adivasis  and  OBCs  must  be  supplemented  by affirmative  action  for  the  poor  and  other
disadvantaged communities. In order to ensure that the  real  benefits  of  reservations  flow  to  the deserving, those persons, families, and communities
within  the  reserved  categories  who  have  hitherto not  benefitted  from  reservations  must  get  priority over the well off. There should be special provisions
for  the  extremely  disadvantaged  Dalits  ( Mahadalits), the most backward OBCs, particularly vulnerable  adivasis  and  NT/DNT  nomadic

13.   Effective mechanisms should be in place to protect t h e   M u s l i m   c o m m u n i t y   f r o m   s u s p i c i o n ,
indifference,  backwardness,  and  discrimination.  It should  be  ensured  that  Muslims,  especially backward  Muslims  (pasmanda)  enjoy  equal
opportunity  in  education  and  employment. Management of waqfs should be handed over from the government to local communities.

Movement rather than a party: our organizational vision

We need an organization to implement these dreams and policies – an organization that would look like a political
party, but not behave like one, a party that belongs to the people and not its leaders. The image of the political party is
at its worst today—most of them being victims of individual control, the tyranny of their high-command and specific
families. It is virtually impossible for the common citizen, especially women to make their way into these hierarchies
in a straightforward manner. The rank and file of the party usually has no role to play in formulating the policies of the
party. While these parties accumulate wealth and muscle-power   in the name of   elections, often even their own
workers, let alone ordinary citizens, have no clue of the income or expenditure of these huge sums. In order to distance
ourselves from this routine image of the political party, we have a number of special provisions for members of our

1. Any citizen of this country should be able to bring a complaint of corruption or the violation of its code
of  conduct  against  any  member  of  the  party.  This will be investigated by the Ombudsman, a Lokpal of
the  party,  comprising  retired  judges,  fully independent of the party leadership. The party will
have to abide by its decision.

2. Candidates for elections will be chosen not by the party  leadership,  but  by  the  party  workers  at  the
local level, in an open convention, with participation of local people. The candidate thus will be chosen by
the people.

3. The   organization will maintain complete   transparency  in  its  income  and  expenditure
statements, making public unaudited statement of all sources of donations and expenditures.

4. There will be one-third reservation for women at all levels of party functionaries as well as candidates.

5. Students and young people are expected to play the principal role in the party and so, there would be no
need  for  separate  student  and  youth  wings  of  the organization.

6. The  party  will  be  built  bottom-up,  with  all  'top' party  officials  and  committees  being  elected  by
those  at  the  'bottom'  and  will  be  accountable  to them.

7. No  person  will  serve  more  than  two  terms  in  one position.

8. All complaints about inner-party elections, as well as  functioning,  will  be  referred  to  a  committee
specially constituted to look into it. This committee will  oversee  the  redressal  of  grievances  as  well  as
maintenance of inner-party discipline.

9. The party will maintain a special relationship with like-minded social movements and will respect their
independent identity. All members of the latter will be considered to be Associate members of the party
and will have voting rights in the process of selecting candidates for elections.

10. As a rule, the party will respect difference of opinion amongst  its  members,  apart  from  a  minimum
ideological consistency. The associated movements and  organizations  will  be  free  to  adhere  to  their
constitutions  and  carry  on  their  policies  and programmes independently as well

Politics as ethics: our code of conduct

Politics as we know it carries the risk of moral lapse, of the  gulf  between  words  and  deeds,  of  long-term
principles  being  compromised  for  the  sake  of  short-term success. It is hard to guarantee otherwise. Yet, with
a  constant  self-awareness  on  these  questions  and maintaining continuous and open discussion on these
issues,  the  movement  can  perhaps  keep  its  ethical profile different. We have devised a code of conduct for
members of the party, by which they can be assessed and investigated  by  the  ombudsman  as  indicated  earlier.
Any  member  of  the  public  or  a  party  worker  is empowered  to  bring  a  complaint  about  any  office-bearer or candidate on the following grounds:

1. An  involvement  in  any  kind  of  corruption (including the giving or receiving bribes and tax-evasion)

2. An organized use of violence in political work or having a criminal record or image.

3. Involvement in any action or organization that spreads  untouchability,  caste  or  communal

4. Any  kind  of  exploitation  or  ill—treatment  of women;  a  reputation  of  having  a  poor  moral character.

5. Drug  or  alcohol  addiction  leading  to  being  a social nuisance.

6. Non-declaration  or  false  declaration  of  assets and income.

There  will  be  additional  provisions  for  elected representatives (equivalent or upwards of Zila Parishad
members, including MLAs and MPs). These will also be under  the  purview  of  the  Lokpal  of  the  party  for
purposes of investigation.

1. The representative will not use any of the usual  trappings available to government   functionaries—cars  with  red  lights  or  sirens,
unnecessary security etc.

2. The party will decide which part of the income and perks of the office would be availed to live an ordinary middle-class existence.

3. The  representative  shall  not  utilize  any discretionary privilege(like MP's quotas) or use symbols of institutionalized corruption like the
MPLAD Scheme.

And finally, ours and yours The  quest  for  Swaraj  demands  action,  it  demands  sacrifice.  The  resolve  to  preserve  the  idea  of  Swaraj  demands
integrity, industry, and inner strength. What goes by the name of a party is for us an organization embodying these virtues.

Politics  is  not  merely  a  duty  of  despair,  but  the  determination  of  turning  the  ideal  into  the  real.  Politics  is  about discovering the light of hope in the heart of darkness. Politics is the bridge that connects knowledge to social reality.

Politics is about shaping ideas, building public cultures, and indeed, creating a people. Not for us though, a politics that begins with elections and ends with state power. For us, politics is as much about struggle and creativity. Not for us, a politics limited to the external world. For us, politics is as much about an encounter with the inner world-- our homes,
our minds, indeed our inner selves.

Politics is our yugdharma, the imperative of our contemporary. We have stepped into politics to protect and promote the endangered dharma of politics. We have entered politics with a dream and a resolve for a better world, a better country, a better society, and indeed a better self.

We' includes you as well. We, the People, shall fight. We shall win!
Below is the full text of vision document of Arvind Kejriwal upcoming party
In Hindi

IAC-Vision-Document Party Arvind Kejriwal

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Tuesday, October 02, 2012

Tags – Vision Document Arvind Kejriwal


Rakesh Kumar October 03, 2012  

Thanks for the presentation of
vision document of Arvind Kejriwal's party.