Q.1: What is AVAM (Aam Aadmi Party Volunteers Action Manch)?
A.1: AVAM is a forum for Aam Aadmi Party (AAP) Volunteers. AVAM is an effort to bring together each & every member who has actively and selflessly participated in this struggle for ‘change of system’. It is intended to help establish a mechanism within ‘AAP’ that takes forward this struggle in the right direction with renewed and consistent vigor. And the grassroots volunteers form the core of that mechanism and change agents for ‘change of system’. AVAM emphasizes on volunteers’ participation in decision making process on all important issues with bottom up organizational structure for true representation of volunteers spread across right from a small distant village to NRIs staying in several countries. AVAM emphasizes on checks & balances in the party so that party truly remains democratic in nature and its actions so that volunteers who have taken up the role & responsibility of leading the party remains answerable and accountable to the party volunteers and supporters to avoid any arbitrary and autocratic style of conducting party affairs. AVAM emphasizes on urgent need of connecting party with Aam Aadmi by supporting him / her in his/her fight for respectable survival in the society against ever rising inflation, corruption, injustice, poor delivery of public services and hindrances in fulfillment of one’s rights, fundamental or for basic needs. AVAM emphasizes need for genuine transparency in the party functioning, the only way to achieve ‘Vyavastha Parivartan’ as mere ‘Satta Parivartan’ is not party’s goal. AVAM wants party, not to be merely election centric but a true vehicle for taking the country towards ideal democracy by establishing the successful model, first in the party and then in the country. AVAM draws its strength from party’s constitution and vision document – ‘Hamara Sapna – Rajnitik Kranti’ and no way has contradiction at any point.
Q.2: What is the definition of Volunteer?
A.2: All party workers who have contributed in the formation of Aam Aadmi Party or contributed after the formation of the party or are contributing at present, with selfless interest for the ultimate goal of ‘corruption free India’ and ‘Vyavastha Parivartan,’ including office bearers or National Executive Committee Members are de’facto volunteers. The difference is that of role and responsibilities. Each one is gifted by different skills and strengths and according to his/her capability assumes his/her role in the party. But, as far as honor and respect is concerned, all party workers are equally honorable.
Q.3: What circumstances led to formation of concept of AVAM?
A.3: When Delhi Assembly Election was declared, party decided to contest with full strength and vigor. Party announced Candidate Selection Process. However, from most of the constituencies, volunteers protested against violation of norms by party observers themselves who were responsible for smooth implementation of candidate selection process. The complainants were humiliated to the extent that a large number of devoted party workers became inactive and silent. It was the volunteers who came to Delhi from across the country and overseas who worked hard spending their own money for their food and conveyance as party had very little funds to support these volunteers. They came to help AAP to win the election so as to display the model of SWARAJ in Delhi fist. But, demoralization of Delhi volunteers due to humiliation and insult by the party leaders severely affected election results in favor of party. Party failed to achieve even clear majority as against expectations of thumping majority. Resigning from Delhi Government was an extremely important decision but party leaders did not consult party volunteers before taking the decision that proved almost a fatal decision for the party. Then after, party leaders all of sudden decided to contest maximum Lok Sabha seats during general elections without consulting volunteers. In several constituencies, Party leaders gave tickets to candidates who were far from competent to meet the set criteria of party or the spirit of party constitution. Again, there was gross violation of selection process and norms declared by the party leaders themselves. From a large number of constituencies, volunteers registered their complaints but they were completely ignored and those who followed up persistently were humiliated beyond description.
Karan Singh, as being in charge of Volunteer Engagement Cell, was receiving complaints from across the country who visited him. He frequently conveyed to Arvindji about this; submitted detailed letters also. But, he simply received verbal assurances of doing needful when time permits. Finally, to contain, growing unrest among volunteers, Arvindji proposed his name in the volunteers meeting held on 29th May 2014 at Constitution Club of India as Coordinator for Volunteers’ grievances redressal. Meeting of 3000 Volunteers approved his name with great applause. He prepared the process chart of his strategy. However, when he visited Kiradi Vidhan Sabha where 133 volunteers had gathered, the grievances discussed and voting was started implementing detailed report with comments submitted. This led to restricting Karan Singh’s initiative to visit each Vidhan Sabha of Delhi and asked to keep himself confined within four walls of party office. Karan Singh proposed concept of AVAM for Arvindji’s approval and the result was withdrawal of his party allotted mobile number without any prior communication. This is just the tip of the iceberg. Karan Singh is witness of many serious irregularities in the party that he feared that party has completely deviated from the declared goals and procedures. Party became high command centric though Arvindji has criticized in his SWARAJ book and party vision document ‘Hamara sapana – Rajnitik Kranti’such culture in other parties. Karan Singh with many other devoted volunteers felt that thousands of volunteers have joined this party or supporting it because it pronounced that party’s goal is Vyavastha Parivartan and not mere Satta Parivartan. Accountability of leaders is to people and they are not masters but servants of people concept of party has remained in books only and not in their behavior. This led to give birth to concept of AVAM which is totally based on party’s philosophy as pronounced in party’s constitution and vision document. The sole objective of AVAM is to strengthen the party which has come into existence by sacrifice of thousands of volunteers and supporters across the country and NRIs settled in several countries. Hundreds of young volunteers feel emotionally exploited by AAP. The Indian history will take note of these volunteers who sacrificed their career for the country. This cannot be allowed to go into drain else country will once again miss the opportunity to get rid of cancer of corruption. If the poor countrymen feel that they were emotionally exploited by AAP, history will not forgive AAP volunteers for their failure to say and uphold truth when the time came.
Q. 4: Who can be member of AVAM?
A.4. All party workers, right from the National Convener (Arvindji at present) of the party, NEC members and all grass root volunteers who contribute their might to the party selflessly can become AVAM members. Those full time volunteers who may be offered honorarium to meet their personal basic needs are also eligible since they form the nucleus of the party and their role is vital for efficient functioning of the party.
Q.5. What is the membership fee?
A.5. AVAM is only a concept awaiting its sanction from the party. And therefore, at this stage, there is no subscription fee. Any volunteers whom the concept appeals can join AVAM by approaching through AVAM’s helpline numbers as under:
Q.6. Who is chief architect of mentor of AVAM?
A.6. Mr. Karan Singh, who had been looking after volunteer engagement cell at party office at Hanuman Road, at Varansi during Loksabha election and later given responsibility to look after volunteers’ grievances also in the presence and approval of 3000 volunteers assembled in the meeting conducted by the first volunteer Arvind Kejriwal ji, is mentor or chief architect of AVAM. AVAM has evolved after his interaction with thousands of volunteers who came to him to offer their services for the party.
Q.7. What are the demands of AVAM?
A.7. AVAM has submitted following demands with Volunteers sitting in National Executive Committee responsible to send it to National Council for wide debate and approval as party constitution lays its complete emphasis on participatory process and democracy.
The list of demands is based on the ideology of ‘Swaraj’ as a highly decentralized model of governance, to uphold the party idealism intact and nowhere it contains an iota of personal interest of any individual or a group of persons.
- The list of Ordinary Members (who do not have voting rights) in every ward level unit with Name, Age and Address must be made available for inspection at every local party office
- The list of Active Members (who have voting rights) in every ward level unit with Name, Age and Addressmust be made available for inspection at every local party office
- All the Active Members as in 2 above, are issued with unique ID numbers and ID cards
- A new, revised candidate selection process that is truly transparent and truly participatory with AAP active members having well-defined voting rights is put in place within 30 days
- Declare a permanent and sustainable action plan for members’ continuous engagement for public cause activities providing opportunity to connect with people, learn the lacuna in the system, and be agents for change – for Vyavastha Parivartan leading to SWARAJ
- A format for application of Active Membership, as per Article III(B)(ii)of the party constitution, must be made available at every local party office
- Declare policy and mechanism that takes care of full time volunteers’ basic needs and dignified living
- Establish a forum for free and open interaction of volunteers, for recognizing their contribution and nurturing their leadership potential
- Lay the foundation – within 60 days – for top decision making bodies like PAC, NEC etc to be composed of volunteers’ elected representatives
- The Active Membership fee and contribution to be made, as per Article III(B)(x) of the party constitution, must be announced
- Financial report of Funds transferred, collected and spent at level of ward unit or Vidhan Sabha unit or Lok Sabha unit must be made available on the party website.
- The list of Staff on Salaries as per the Income and Expenditure statement on the party website must be made available with Staff Names and amount of Salary received.
- Income and assets of the office bearers of the party and their family must be declared on the party website as per Article VI(A)(b)(vi) of the Constitution of the party.
- Decisions of Political Affairs Committee must not be announced without announcing the attendees of that meeting of the PAC.
- Resolutions passed by the National Executive must be made public, verbatim, on the party website.
- Resolutions and Constitutional Amendments made by the National Council must be made public,verbatim, on the party website.
- List of National Council m embers with Name, Age, email id and Address must be made available at the central office for inspection.
AVAM website: www.avam.in