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AAP Lunges from Crisis to Crisis, But Why Is Kejriwal Silent?

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal during a dialogue with the SC/STs at Margao, Goa  (PTI)

Delhi Chief Minister Arvind Kejriwal during a dialogue with the SC/STs at Margao, Goa (PTI)

There's daily trouble in AAP Punjab, there’s chaos in AAP Delhi and the AAP brigade in Goa is wondering just where the hard-earned momentum is going. From the mainstream media to the local party volunteer, one question prevails: Just why is Arvind Kejriwal silent?

There's daily trouble in AAP Punjab, there’s chaos in AAP Delhi and the AAP brigade in Goa is wondering just where the hard-earned momentum is going. From the mainstream media to the local party volunteer, one question prevails: Just why is Arvind Kejriwal silent?

The Delhi Chief Minister returned from Rome after attending the canonisation ceremony of Mother Teresa on Tuesday. And his reluctance to speak to mainstream media on the chaos that has hit the party units in Punjab and Delhi while he was in Vatican has sparked speculation that the CM has hit the ‘silent’ mode.

But that may not entirely be true. If anything, it points to his evolving communication strategy. He hasn’t had a press conference of late, but is increasingly relying on his Twitter account and video messages to communicate. It seems that whenever the Aam Aadmi Party lunges into a crisis – as it seems prone to, every now and then – he resorts to social networks and video messages, thus avoiding talking to mainstream media.

Crisis or no crisis, Kejriwal will skip heartland Delhi for almost two weeks. He is scheduled to visit Punjab for four days starting September 8. After that he is likely to go for a surgery in Bangalore on September 13, and will spent the next 10 days recuperating in the Karnataka capital.

While the Chief Minister has shied away from the media, he has certainly not disappeared from Delhi. So far, Kejriwal has chaired all cabinet meetings, including one the day before he left for Rome. On the same day, he was also present at the ‘Shramik samvaad’ in the Talkatora stadium, at a programme organised by the Delhi government on the raising of minimum wages for workers. On August 31, he was at the secretariat at a ceremony to felicitate Olympic champions PV Sindhu and Sakshi Malik.

People close to Kejriwal say he also makes it a point to be both seen and heard at the launch of major development initiatives in Delhi.