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AAP struggles to find women candidates willing to join politics

Oct 25, 2013 08:52 AM IST Politics Politics

New Delhi: The Aam Aadmi Party in Delhi has only seven women candidates out of 62. AAP is struggling to find women candidates willing to join politics.

CNN-IBN spoke to some of the women candidates, including Rakhi Birla, who is contesting from the Mangolpuri constituency, a seat reserved for Dalits. "I am happy to get this opportunity and will serve the people," she said.

All of 26 years and a journalist till a few months ago, Rakhi Birla is the AAP's candidate for the Mangolpuri assembly constituency and seems undeterred by what she is up against. "People who raise them to the skies can also bring them down to the earth," she said.

Mangolpuri is a reserved seat for Dalits and Rakhi is taking on three-time Congress MLA Raj Kumar Chauhan. Traditionally, the twelve reserved seats in Delhi have been a Congress bastion. But now, AAP claims that the loyalties are shifting.

"It is the aam aadmi, the aam aurat, the antim insan, the last person. And that last person is moving towards us and not wearing a cap of his caste but that of the aam aadmi," said AAP leader Yogendra Yadav.

Farhana Anjum in Ballimaran constituency is taking on three-time Congress MLA and Delhi food minister Haroon Yosuf. Farhana fought the municipal elections on an RLD ticket and lost by 200 votes.

She is one of the two Muslim women candidates fielded by AAP and the only woman who applied from this area. "I am with the AAP because it is fighting against corruption," she said.

Farhana is being helped by Shivendu Kumar, an AAP volunteer who has taken a break from his Kanpur business. "The country is caught in divisive politics and we cannot develop if we do not go beyond that," Shivendu said.

Despite its best efforts, AAP says it could only nominate seven women out of the 62 candidates it is fielding. This is not just about fielding women candidates. The all powerful political affairs committee also does not have a single woman as its member.

"This is on top of our agenda. We are trying to make our composition as best as we can," Yogendra Yadav said.