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Delhi Election 2015 The ‘K’ Factor

Updated: February 7, 2015 10:47 am

Kiran Bedi holds 40 years of experience in administrative position. Also she is thorough with the knowledge on how to make things work in capital

With the joining and anointment of the former IPS officer Kiran Bedi as BJP’s chief ministerial candidate, the the gong has rung for the Delhi Assembly election. Kiran Bedi’s introduction in the Delhi politics is being seen by many as a trump card by the BJP to checkmate the poll agenda of Aam Aadmi Party.

Now the battle for the CM post will only get intense as the both the candidates are ready to take head-to-head competition. According to a survey by a leading news channel, Kejriwal was the most preferred chief ministerial candidate but with Bedi induction, a stiff competition has been noticed as she managed the support of 44 per cent of the respondents to the survey. Kiran Bedi, one of the most celebrated and the first female police officers who ever served the Indian Police Force, started her career in the year 1970, when she took the job of a lecturer at Khalsa College for Women in Amritsar. Two years later, she joined the Indian Police Services. After giving the exam for he premiere service of the country, she scored the perfect score to become an IAS but she took IPS instead. All the way through her career, she has taken up a number of challenging assignments. She has served as the Traffic Commissioner of New Delhi, Deputy Inspector General of Police in the insurgency prone area of Mizoram.

Not many know but the spectators at the 1973 Republic Day Parade were amazed to see her heading the Police Contingent. The then Prime Minister, Indira Gandhi was impressed to see a lady IPS officer and invited her to breakfast. She has also been the Lieutenant Governor of Chandigarh and Director General of Narcotics Control Bureau. An interesting thing about Kiran Bedi is that, sometimes, she is referred to as Crane Bedi. The reason behind calling her by this name is her daring act of towing the car of Prime Minister Indira Gandhi due to violation of parking rules, with a crane.

In 1985, she ordered 1600 pending promotions to be made in a single day and issued standing instructions that if any file was not cleared within three days, the person concerned would be called personally to explain the delay.

Kiran Bedi made the Indian Police Service change its rules in matters related to traffic management, control over narcotics and VIP security. During her tenure as the Inspector General of Tihar Jail, she brought about several reforms in the way the prisons were managed. She brought forth a number of measures like yoga, meditation, redressal of complaints made by the prisoners etc. She also laid the foundation for the establishment of two voluntary organisations, namely, Navajyoti (1988) and India Vision Foundation (1994). These organisations were primarily set up with the aim of improving the living conditions of the drug addicts and the underprivileged people. Her organization was presented with the Serge Soitiroff Memorial Award by the United Nations.

Both Arvind Kejriwal and Kiran Bedi captured the attention of the nation during Anna Hazare led India Against Corruption (IAC) movement. Bedi and Kejriwal were considered two strong pillars of the movement and they were leading the movement till they parted ways, when Kejriwal formed his political party AAP in October 2012.

Kiran Bedi holds 40 years of experience in administrative capability. Also she is thorough with the knowledge on how to make things work in the capital. She has always taken a position for women safety in the city and in the country, which can be a huge plus point in favour of her. Bedi’s no-nonsense image as a tough cop and her strong stand on women’s security keeps her in good stead as a leader of the BJP. It is this image that the party would like to harvest and highlight in its election campaign.


With the anoinment of Kiran Bedi as the CM candidate, the BJP started to struggle with internal strife. This was seen in Bedi’s first roadshow when she was not accorded any welcome at Krishna Nagar constituency in East Delhi which was represented by senior leader Harsh Vardhan for five consecutive terms. The BJP workers kept shouting slogans in support of him, showing their displeasure to party’s decision to field the former cop.

And simultaneously high voltage drama was witnessed at the Delhi BJP office as Delhi BJP President, Satish Upadhyay’s supporters shouted slogans and staged a sit-in protest for “not allowing” their leader to contest. A scuffle was then broken out at the office and the police was called to restore order as Upadhyay’s efforts to pacify them did not succeed. The supporters demanded that Upadhyay be fielded from Mehrauli constituency, considered a stronghold of BJP.

Some experts say Bedi’s late induction shows the party was grappling with self-doubt and felt the need to bring in a “more credible” face to counter AAP. “This is a masterstroke. AAP will find it hard to counter this. She has administrative experience and is a credible face,” a senior BJP member said.

Overall, it will be interesting to see whether Kiran Bedi’s charisma and clean image will prove to be a trump card for the BJP in this election.

By Rohan Pal

“In Politics, Honesty And Development

Are Two Impo-rtant Factors”

Prabhat Jha, In- Charge, Delhi BJP, spoke to Uday India on issues related to projection of Kran Bedi as CM of Delhi.

At the very last moment, BJP projected Kiran Bedi as chief ministerial candidate. What message do you want to give to your cadre through this?

Our cadre is politically very sharp, not only sharp, but also result- oriented. It’s time we form the government in Delhi. After Narendra Modiji became Prime Minister, a debate has started in the country as to who is more honest and who is less. In politics, honesty and development are two important factors. Kiran Bedi is a person known world over and the first female IPS officer of the country. Party got the pulse of the people and thus projected Kiran Bedi as the chief ministerial candidate.

Will that not give an impression that there was no face in Delhi BJP, who can contest against Kejriwal?

This is not the case. Is Harshvardhan not a minister? If that would have been the case, then why he has been sent to the Parliament. Vijay Goel is in Rajya Sabha. Vijendra Gupta, Jagdish Mukhi, both are contesting election. There always remains a problem with anything and we try to solve these problems. Delhi is a UT, and here a person, who becomes a Chief Minister, should know every nook and cranny of the state, that’s why Kiran Bedi was selected. She was the DGP of Delhi Police and an honest person.

It is said that the BJP is an ideology-based party, but now it seems that for forming the government, the party is compromising on its ideology.

Do you think the party has compromised on its ideology? It is not the case. The former CM of UP Jagdambika Pal joined our party; Ramvilas Paswan also came into our fold. In politics, everyone needs to see one’s strength. Winnability is the key.

Becoming a Chief Minister and getting a ticket from a party are two different things. A Chief Minister is someone, who understands the ideology of the party…

Kiran Bedi understands our ideology very well. First thing, she never says that she is a politician, secondly, she saw the development of the country under the party and Prime Minister Narendra Modi and is impressed with it. For coming in the front, one needs both the party and State and one thing is very clear, more than us, Delhi needs Kiran Bedi. That’s why we took this step and since our Parliamentary Board took this decision, everybody accepted it without any hullabaloo.

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